Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013

19.

Inspection of protected animals and equipment.

19.—(1) A person who has in his or her possession or under his or her control a protected animal shall take all necessary measures to ensure that the animal is regularly inspected and—

( a) in case the animal is being kept in an intensive unit, not less than once a day—

(i) thoroughly inspect the animal’s condition and state of health or cause the condition and state of health of the animal to be so inspected, and

(ii) for the purpose of ensuring that the automatic or other technical equipment used in the unit is free from defects, either—

(I) if he or she is competent to do so, thoroughly inspect the equipment, or

(II) cause the equipment to be thoroughly inspected by a competent person,

or

( b) in case the animal is not kept in an intensive unit, at intervals sufficient to avoid the animal being caused injury or unnecessary suffering, thoroughly inspect, or cause to be inspected, the condition and state of health of the animal.

(2) Where a protected animal is found on inspection (whether the inspection is made for the purposes of this section or otherwise) not to be in a state of well-being, the person in possession or control of the animal shall immediately take all necessary measures to prevent the animal being caused injury or unnecessary suffering (including seeking appropriate treatment from a veterinary practitioner or other appropriate person).

(3) Where on an inspection of an intensive unit (whether the inspection is made for the purposes of this section or otherwise) a defect in equipment is discovered, the owner or the person in charge of the unit shall immediately remedy, or cause to be remedied, the defect or, if this is impracticable, the owner or person shall immediately take or cause to be taken all necessary measures required to safeguard the welfare of a protected animal kept in the unit.

(4) Where measures referred to in subsection (3) are taken, the owner or person in charge of the unit shall ensure that the measures are maintained until the defect is remedied.

(5) In any proceedings in which it is shown that an inspection referred to in subsection (2) or (3) was carried out and that on such inspection either an animal was found not to be in a state of well-being or a defect described in subsection (3) was discovered, it is a defence for the accused to show both that he or she was unaware that the inspection had been carried out and that in the circumstances of the case his or her being so unaware was not unreasonable.

(6) A person who fails to comply with this section commits an offence.

(7) Where a person having possession or control of a protected animal fails to comply with this section or section 20 and that person is not the owner of the animal, then the owner of the animal shall also have committed an offence under this section in respect of the subsection concerned, unless he or she shows that he or she took all reasonable steps to ensure the subsection concerned was complied with.

(8) In this section “intensive unit” means a premises on which protected animals are kept under a husbandry system relying, for the purpose of providing for the care of the animals, on automatic equipment to such an extent that a failure of that equipment would, if it were not rectified or if some alternative arrangements were not made for the care of the animals contained therein, cause the animals unnecessary suffering.