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Vets delighted by circus animal ban

British Veterinary Association | British Veterinary Association

2 min read Partner content

The publication of draft legislation that will ban the use of wild animals from circuses has been welcomed by vets.

Under the proposed law, which only applies to England, the ban will not include animals such as horses and dogs and it will come into force in December 2015.

The Government had previously introduced a licensing and regulation scheme for wild animals in travelling circuses in England.

Currently there are twenty wild animals performing in two licensed circuses.

The British Veterinary Association( BVA) said it was “absolutely delighted” that the draft Bill has been published.

“The BVAhas strongly supported a ban because we believe the welfare needs of non-domesticated, wild animals cannot be met within the environment of a travelling circus, especially in terms of accommodation and the ability to express normal behaviour,” said BVAPresident Peter Jones.

“We have been adamant that a licensing scheme will not address these issues.

“Together with the Born Free Foundation, Captive Animals’ Protection Society and the RSPCA, we have for some time been urging the Government to do all it can to introduce a complete ban as quickly as possible.

“The welfare of these animals is emblematic of the way we treat all animals and I am heartened that we will soon see the end of the exploitation of these animals in the confines of a circus.”

Environment Minister Lord de Mauley said:

“This is a big step towards making it illegal to use wild animals in circus performances.

“Until the ban comes into force, travelling circuses owners must meet strict licensing conditions to ensure high welfare conditions for wild animals.”

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