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Animal health

Our animal health team enforces legislation designed to protect the health and welfare of livestock and farm animals.

Cows in a field

About animal health

We are on hand to assist and advise farmers in complying with animal health and welfare law dealing with livestock. This legislation aims to:

  • protect the welfare of animals on farms, during transport and at market.
  • prevent, control and eradicate animal diseases.
  • safeguard human health from diseases which may be transmitted from animals.

Our work includes:

  • inspection of livestock holdings
  • checks on vehicles transporting animals
  • attendance at livestock markets
  • licensing the movement of pigs.

We work closely with DEFRA - the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

Contact an Animal Health Officer for advice on animal health matters or to make a complaint if you believe that an animal health problem exists.


All movements of cattle, deer, sheep, goats and pigs are controlled by a general licence.

Holdings are still subject to a standstill period and bio security measures.

Failure to comply with the rules laid down in the licences may result in revocation of the general licence and/or prosecution.

You can find out more about animal licences in the business section of the website on the licences page and the animal movement licences page.