Animal Health and Welfare Act 2013


Measures relating to animals in distress.

24.—(1) If an authorised officer has reasonable grounds for believing that a protected animal is injured or suffering or is in a state of acute neglect or distress, the officer may take, or arrange for the taking of, such steps as appear to him or her to be immediately necessary to alleviate the animal’s suffering, including—

( a) requiring a person apparently in possession or control of the animal to—

(i) obtain any necessary veterinary attention from a veterinary practitioner for the animal, or

(ii) provide appropriate shelter, food and drinkable water for the animal suitable to its needs,


( b) seizing and detaining the animal and any dependent offspring of the animal under section 38(4)(v) .

(2) Where an animal is seized and detained for the purposes of subsection (1), an authorised officer may remove it, or arrange for it to be removed, to a place of safety, or such other place as the officer thinks fit.

(3) Where an authorised officer exercises a power under this section, otherwise than with the knowledge of a person who is responsible for the animal concerned, that officer must, as soon as reasonably practicable after exercising the power, take such steps as are reasonable in the circumstances to bring the exercise of the power to the notice of that person.

(4) The costs of anything done under this section may F5 [ be recovered ] by the authorised officer concerned, the local authority concerned or the Minister in a court of competent jurisdiction or by deducting the sum from any moneys due or becoming due and payable by the Minister to the person.

(5) Where a local authority or the Minister proposes to recover the costs of anything done under this section, the authority or Minister, as the case may be, shall—

( a) inform by notice the person concerned of the costs (including, but not limited to, salaries, subsistence, hiring of vehicles, machinery or equipment, feeding and veterinary fees), the reason for the costs and that the person may make representations in relation to the proposal not later than 14 days from the date of the notice,

( b) consider any representations duly made, and

( c) make a decision and inform by notice the person concerned, stating the decision and the reasons for the decision.

(6) This section is in addition to and not a substitution for the emergency measures under section 44 .

(7) A person who fails to comply with subsection (1)(a) commits an offence.




Substituted (28.05.2019) by Greyhound Racing Act 2019 (15/2019), s. 66 item 4, commenced on enactment.