Animals in Entertainment / “Sport”

The Hunting Act 2004

The Hunting Act makes it illegal to hunt wild mammals with one or more dogs unless the hunting is exempt. Exempt hunting includes the hunting of rabbits and rats, according to certain conditions. The Act also bans the participation in, facilitation of and allowing the use of land for hare coursing. The penalty for these activities is a £5,000 fine.


The Performing Animals (Regulation) Act 1925

The welfare of performing animals is provided for in the general provisions to avoid suffering and ensure welfare in the Animal Welfare Act 2006. In addition the training and exhibition of performing animals is further regulated by the 1925 Act which requires trainers and exhibitors of such animals to be registered with the local authority. Under this Act, the police and officers of local authorities, who may include a vet, have power to nter premises where animals are being trained and exhibited, and if cruelty and neglect is detected, magistrates’ courts can prohibit or restrict the training or exhibition of the animals and suspend or cancel the registration granted under the Act.