Licence - exotic, dangerous and wild animals - Guidance

This page contains guidance notes and legislation relating to the exotic, dangerous and wild animals licence application.

Legislation and guidance

Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976
Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976 (Modification Order) 1984                                                          The Legislative Reform (Dangerous Wild Animals) (Licensing) Order 2010

Do I need a licence to keep a dangerous wild animal?

Yes, if it is listed in the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976 (Modification) Order schedule, and the animal is not kept in a zoo, circus, pet shop or laboratory.

Determination of the application

Local Authority will look at the following before issuing a licence:-

1. Is it in the public interest on grounds of safety, nuisance or otherwise.

2. The suitability of the application.

3. That the accommodation provided for the animal will not allow it to escape.

4. That the accommodation is suitable as regards construction, size, temperature, lighting, ventilation, drainage, cleanliness and suitable for number of animals.

5. That the animal will be supplied with adequate and suitable food, drink, bedding material and be visited at suitable intervals.

6. The steps taken for protection of any animal in case of fire or other emergency are appropriate.

7. All reasonable precautions are to be taken to prevent control and spread of diseases.

8. That the animal can take adequate exercise.

9. An authorised Veterinary Inspector's report will also be required.

Granting of the licence

Local Authority will NOT award a licence unless person owns and possesses or proposes to own the animal UNLESS exceptional circumstances.

The licence may be approved or refused.

Licence conditions

Shall specify:

  • The animal shall be kept by no other person other than a person specified by name or description in the licence.
  • The animal shall normally be held at such premises as specified in the licence.
  • The animal shall not be moved from premises or shall only be moved as specified in the licence.
  • The applicant holds a current insurance policy for damage caused by the animal.
  • The terms of any policy shall be satisfactory.
  • The conditions restricting the species and number of animals of each species.
  • The person to whom a licence is granted SHALL at all reasonable times make available a copy of the licence to any person entitled to keep any animal under the authority of the licence.
  • Any other conditions relating to determination of licence except (first two).

Varying the licence

Local Authority may at any time specify new conditions, revoke/vary existing licence.

This may be done if the licensee requests it or otherwise.

Grounds for appeal

Applicant can appeal on grounds of refusal, conditions attached, variations or revocations.

Period of licence

A new licence is valid for two years from the date on which it was granted.

Renewal of licence

Applicant must reapply before the current licence expires.

Local authority inspection

Local Authority may authorise a vet or other competent person to inspect any premises where any animal is proposed to be held, is or may be held. Inspection can be undertaken at any reasonable time to look at the premises or the animal.

Local Authority has the power to seize and to dispose of/destroy animals without compensation and claim costs for certain contraventions.

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Contact us

0303 123 1702

Allerdale Borough Council
Allerdale House, Workington, Cumbria,
CA14 3YJ