Citizens Advice Bureau




Extent: Jersey
July 2001
Updated 18 November 2013

The Animal Welfare Law

The welfare of animals and the prevention of suffering by animals is laid down in the Animal Welfare [Jersey] Law 2004. A licence is required from The Minister for Planning and Environment to run a pet shop, kennels, catteries and animal sanctuary.


1 In Jersey law owners of animals involved in accidents are not liable unless the aggrieved party can prove negligence on the owner's part, which involves the time and cost of court action.

2 The Law divides animals into two groups, dangerous or domestic. Owners of dangerous animals have a higher duty to keep the animals under strict control, this mainly concerns bulls.

3 Horses have complete protection. Owners are not liable unless total negligence on their part is proved.


4 Under the Dogs (Jersey) Law 1961, dog owners must hold a licence and fit a collar with identity. Under Jersey law dog owners only have to keep them on a lead within the town ring-road, so owners could be liable if an accident is caused by a dog not on a lead in this area.


5 Some household insurance policies cover liability for pets and farmers are covered under their public liability policy.


6 It is the property owner's responsibility to fence neighbour's animals out, and not the owners responsibility to keep their animals in.

7 There are various (non-harmful) repellents for invasive cats, pepper sprays etc., garden centres normally have a selection.

8 In serious cases of large numbers of straying fowl the Environmental Health officers may consider intervention. Contact the Environmental Health Department on 443712.