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Dangerous Wild Animals

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Anyone that keeps an animal defined as being dangerous under the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976 needs to be licensed by the Council.
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The intention of the license is to protect the health and welfare of the animal and ensure its security and other people's safety.  

Examples of dangerous wild animals are:

  • Certain types of monkeys
  • Poisonous snakes and other dangerous reptiles
  • Wild boar
  • Ostrichs and Emus

Hybrid or cross-bred animals may need a license, depending on how far removed the animal is from its wild ancestor See the full list of animals you need a licence for.

How to Apply

To apply for a dangerous wild animal licence please contact us directly.


An application/renewal for a wild animal licence costs £155 (with additional veterinary report costs at the expense of the applicant). Licences once issued are valid for 2 years and must be renewed before the expiry date.   


Applicants must not have been disqualified from:

  • Keeping a dog breeding establishment
  • Keeping a pet shop
  • Keeping an animal establishment
  • Having custody of animals

An applicant for a licence will need to consider whether planning permission is required for the proposed licensed activity. They should contact the planning department to discuss whether permission will be needed. The local authority may refuse or defer a decision on an application for a licence until the planning issue has been decided.

Supporting Documentation


Processing and Timescales

An inspection will be carried out by a local authority officer within 28 days of receipt of application. If you have not heard from us within this timescales please contact us

Tacit consent does not apply so your application must be processed by the authority before it can be granted.

No-one may own a dangerous wild animal without first obtaining a licence.

Legislation and Conditions

Applicants and licence holders must meet the requirements of the Dangerous Wild Animal Act 1976 ( and associated conditions.

Failed applications and appeals

If a licence is refused an appeal may be made to the magistrates court which may give such directions regarding the licence or its conditions.

Report a problem

Any complaints or enquiries regarding a dangerous wild animal please e-mail

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