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The Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976

This regulates the keeping of dangerous wild animals.

The Act aims to protect the public and to ensure that the animals are properly cared for. Environmental health are responsible for administering and enforcing the Act.

Before keeping an animal listed within the schedule to this Act you must apply for a licence from Environmental health.

The main legislation can be found at: and guidance to the act is published on the Scottish Government website:

The guidance covers the licensing procedure, provisions of the Act and also provides species specific information. This guidance is a living document and subject to regular and on-going review.

Nothing in this guidance should be taken as legal advice or as a substitute for the legislation itself. Legal advice should be sought where provisions of the Act are unclear.

How to apply


The application must be lodged with Environmental Health & Trading Standards, 5-9 River Terrace, Ayr, KA8 0BJ by post or by emailing your completed application to

Debit/Credit Card payments can be made by calling 0300 123 0900 and asking for Environmental Health. Office hours are Monday - Thursday 9:00am til 4.45pm and Friday 9:00am til 4pm.

Applications will not be processed until Environmental Health are in receipt of the fee.

Will Tacit Consent apply?

In the interests of public safety, there is no automatic granting of a licence should we fail to respond to you. Tacit Consent does not apply.