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Dangerous Wild Animals and Exotic Animals

Advice on where to find information about those species of animals that may require a licence to keep or sell, or specialist knowledge to look after.

The term exotic is used here to broadly describe those animals such as reptiles and spiders that may be more unusual and may require specialist knowledge to keep.

The keeping of exotic species

If you are thinking about keeping an exotic pet we recommend that the type of animal that you intend to keep is researched thoroughly, not only from books and the Internet but also from experienced keepers, especially for those animals that require licensing.

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The illegal trade in endangered species

There is an international agreement between governments known as CITES (the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora). Its aim is to ensure that international trade in specimens of wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival. Anybody interested in the keeping of exotic animal species should make themselves familiar with CITES, in order to be certain they are not breaking the law or unwittingly supporting the illegal trade in animals or animal products.

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Keeping or interfering with wildlife

The keeping or interfering with wildlife may also be subject to legislation and regulation.

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Exotic species purchased from pet shops and breeders

The sale and breeding for the sale of certain species of animal requires a licence.

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If you are unhappy with an animal you have purchased from a pet shop or a breeder and you believe the animal may have been unwell prior to the purchase,  (for example; a puppy that  is showing signs of illness within a short space of time since being purchased.), you can seek advice from Trading Standards in the same way as you can for any other type of purchase.

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