We’re calling for the UK Government to review and reform laws on exotic pet ownership.

Exotic Pets in the UK: Take Action

EXOTIC PETS IN THE UK: TAKE ACTION

Born Free believes that the keeping of wild animals as ‘exotic pets’ in the UK is an issue that urgently needs addressing and significant change.

We are calling for the UK Government to review and reform laws on exotic pet ownership. Consideration should be given to the development and implementation of a robust ‘positive list’ system which establishes a list of species permitted to be kept based on specific criteria, including their welfare needs.

It is currently legal in the UK to keep almost any wild animal as a pet, which can have severe consequences for animal welfare, conservation, human and animal health & safety and the risk of invasive species. Only in a few circumstances do individuals require a licence e.g., for the private keeping of Dangerous Wild Animals. As a result, the true scale and scope of exotic pet ownership is unknown.

Below you will find a number of actions you can take to help resolve the situation and learn more about Born Free’s research into Dangerous Wild Animals and the Exotic Pet Trade in the UK.

A serval facing to the left with mouth open and eyes closed, with a red brick wall in the background

How You Can Help


WRITE TO YOUR MP

Use the link below to write to your MP using our template letter.

Politely but firmly ask them to support Born Free’s call for a comprehensive review of exotic pet legislation, and point out that decisions on whether or not wild animals can be kept as pets should be based on:

  • Whether individual animal welfare needs can be fully met
  • Whether the trade is likely to compromise the conservation of species in the wild
  • Potential environmental concerns, such as the escape of invasive species
  • Full consideration of the risks to public and animal health & safety, including zoonoses

DOWNLOAD OUR TEMPLATE LETTER     WRITE TO YOUR MP


SPREAD THE WORD

Born Free is working to ensure members of the public are informed about the issues with exotic animals as pets. Please help us spread the work by sharing our campaign with your family and friends using the buttons above on the right.


SUPPORT

Help Born Free in its campaign for review and reform of laws relating to exotic pets by making a donation.

DONATE


FIND OUT MORE

You can find out more about the exotic pet trade and the private keeping of wild animals in the UK in the joint Born Free and RSPCA 2021 report The Exotic Pet-demic: UK’s ticking timebomb exposed.

Read the Report     Wild Animals As Pets