Renfrewshire Council

Dangerous Wild Animals Licence

Who needs to have a licence, how to apply for a licence, before we make a decision on your application, conditions of the licence, if you are refused a licence, offences and penalties.

Who needs to have a licence

No person may keep a dangerous wild animals unless they have first obtained a licence from their local authority.

A Dangerous Wild Animal licence may be issued provided the applicant is not disqualified under any of the following Acts:

  • The Pet Animals Act 1951
  • The Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963
  • The Protection of Animals Acts 1911 to 1964
  • The Protection of Animals (Scotland) Acts 1912 to 1964
  • Riding Establishment Acts 1964 and 1970
  • Breeding of Dogs Act 1973

The animals for which a licence is required before they may be kept are listed in the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976 (Modification) (Scotland) Order 2008.


How to apply for a licence

Complete the application form for a dangerous wild animal licence [186KB] .

When we get your licence application, we will arrange for an officer to carry out an inspection of the premises to ensure its suitability to keep and dangerous wild animal.

Dependant on the findings of the inspection a licence may or may not be issued.

Following this, an inspection will be carried out by an Officer and when the Officer is satisfied that the conditions are met, a new licence will be issued.

The cost for a Dangerous wild animals licence is £81.05.


Before we make a decision on your application

Before granting a licence the Licensing Inspector must be satisfied that:

  • it is not contrary to the public interest to do so on the grounds of safety, nuisance or other grounds.
  • the applicant is a suitable person to hold a licence to keep the animals listed on the application.
  • the animal(s) will be kept in accommodation that prevents its escape and is suitable in respect of construction, size, temperature, drainage and cleanliness.
  • that the animal(s) will be supplied with adequate and suitable food drink and bedding material and be visited at suitable intervals.
  • appropriate steps will be taken to ensure the protection of the animal(s) in case of fire or other emergency.
  • all reasonable precautions are taken to prevent the spread of infectious diseases.
  • the animal(s) accommodation is such that it can take adequate exercise.

Conditions of the licence

The licence lasts for one year.

You must contact us immediately with any changes of circumstances.

The onus is on the licence holder to apply for a renewal of the licence in good time, you will not receive any reminder from the Council. Please apply for your following year licence by 30 September to allow  time to process the new licence.

Where the Council issues a licence, these conditions will apply:

  • only the person named on the licence shall be entitled to keep the animal.
  • the animal shall only be kept on the premises named on the licence.
  • the animal shall not be moved or may only be moved in accordance with conditions specified in the licence.
  • the licensee must hold a current insurance policy, approved by the Council, which insures against liability for damage caused by the animal.
  • only the species and number of animals listed on the licence may be kept.
  • the licensee shall make a copy of the licence and its contents available to any other person listed on the licence as being able to look after the animal.
  • the Council may at any time revoke or amend any licence condition.

Inspections of premises will be carried out annually by a Public Health Enforcement Officer (Environmental Health).


If you are refused a licence

Any person aggrieved by a refusal to be granted a licence or by any conditions to which a licence is subject may appeal to the Sheriff who may give such directions regarding the licence or its conditions as it thinks proper.


Offences and penalties

Anybody found guilty of keeping an animal covered by the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976 without a licence to do so or anybody found guilty of failing to comply with any licence condition shall be subject to a fine not exceeding £2,000.

Any person found guilty of obstructing or delaying an Inspector or Authorised Veterinary Practitioner or Veterinary Surgeon shall be subject to a fine not exceeding £2,000.

Where a person keeps an animal without a licence or where a person fails to comply with a licence condition, Inspectors from the Council may seize the animal and may either retain it or have it destroyed or disposed of (to a zoo or elsewhere) without compensation to the owner.

Where the Council incurs any expense in seizing, retaining or disposing of an animal then the person who was the keeper of the animal shall be liable for those costs.