Animal health and welfare

Avian Influenza - Bird Flu

On 18 January 2018, Defra introduced an Avian Influenza Prevention Zone in England. This means it is a legal requirement for all bird keepers to follow strict biosecurity measures.

There is a wide range of laws in the UK designed to protect the health and welfare of domestic and wild animals.

Animal health and welfare laws are enforced jointly by us and the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), in association with other government bodies and independent organisations like the RSPCA.

We manage the licensing of:

  • horse riding premises
  • dog breeding premises
  • animal boarding premises
  • dangerous/wild animals
  • pet shops.

What Defra does 

The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) deals with:

  • national animal health and welfare strategy
  • animal welfare at farms, markets, slaughterhouses
  • the Pet Travel Scheme
  • international trade in animals
  • animal diseases - control and surveillance, BSE, tuberculosis, scrapie, Foot and Mouth disease
  • animal by-products
  • wildlife conservation and biodiversity
  • wildlife crime.

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