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The law on keeping pet goats

There are strict laws covering the keeping, identification and transport of farm animal species, including those kept as pets. To start with, there's the Animal Welfare Act (2006), which says that anyone responsible for an animal has a legal responsibility to meet the five basic welfare needs of their animals. These are:

  • A proper diet
  • Somewhere suitable to live
  • Any need to be housed with or apart from other animals
  • Being allowed to express normal behaviour
  • Protection from and treatment of, illness and injury

Because goats are farm animals, you'll need to comply with extra laws if you want to keep them. For example, there are laws on:

  • The way goats must be identified
  • The registration of the land you keep them on
  • Transporting them
  • Keeping medical records for them

Contact the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) for details on the laws concerning the keeping of goats.

For more information on keeping goats download our booklet.

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