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Dangerous wild animals

The keeping of dangerous wild animals is subject to the licensing requirements of the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976.

Therefore, if you intend to purchase a dangerous wild animal to keep at home it may be necessary for you to first obtain a licence from us under the above act.

Zoos, circuses, pet shops and certain other premises are exempt from this licensing requirement but are subject to other legal controls.

We will require certain details from the applicant:

  • The kinds of dangerous wild animals and the number of each species to be kept
  • The premises where they will normally be kept
  • Confirmation that the keeper (usually the owner and possessor) is not under 18 years of age nor disqualified from keeping animals
  • The appropriate fee

We have to be satisfied that the keeping of the animals will not be contrary to the interests of the public, in particular with regard to safety and nuisance. The suitability of the applicant is also considered as well as the conditions in which the animal will be kept, including it's environment, feed and exercise. Emergency precautions re fire or other incident will be considered as well as ensuring that the spread of infection is prevented and controlled. Suitable insurance will also be required.

The granting of the licence is also subject to the report of an authorised 'vet'.

Where a licence is granted it relates to a calendar year, and we will specify conditions as required by the Act.

Where a person is aggrieved by refusal or the conditions imposed, there is an appeal available to a Magistrate's Court.

The Act specifies penalties for persons found guilty of offences under this legislation, for example, keeping a wild animal without the appropriate licence, or not complying with conditions of a licence.

The fee for applying for a licence under the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976 will be stated upon application and will cover the cost of a veterinary inspection and report if required as part of the licence application.

Contact our City and Neighbourhood team for further information or to request an application form.


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