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Animal health, welfare and movement

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Home   Business   Trading standards   Animal health, welfare and movement

Animal health, welfare and movement

We’re responsible for enforcing legislation relating to the movement of animals. This control helps protect Animal Health and Welfare and prevent, eradicate and control animal diseases such as foot and mouth.

It’s our job to carry out the following:

  • inspect farms and slaughterhouses
  • check farm records and animal movement records are accurate and up to date
  • ensure animal carcasses are disposed of promptly using approved methods

We work with:

  • Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA)
  • Meat Hygiene Service
  • British Cattle Movement Service
  • other local authorities.

Animal movement

When cattle, sheep, goats or pigs are moved onto a farm, no cattle, sheep or goats may move off for a period of 13 days.

Pigs must remain under standstill for 6 days where cattle, sheep and goats have been moved on to a holding.

Sheep and goats

Each time sheep and goats are moved between one holding and another with a different CPH number (except for emergency veterinary treatment), their movements must be recorded on a movement document and reported to the Scottish Animal Movement Unit (SAMU).

SAMU must be notified within 3 days of the movement.

For more information see sheep and goats.

Pigs

Pig movements (except for emergency veterinary treatment) must be recorded in your holding register and in the ScotEID movement reporting database.

ScotEID must be notified before, or on the day of, movement.

If you have notified ScotEID you don’t need a movement document, unless you’re moving either of the following:  

  • pigs less than 12 months old and identified with a temporary mark
  • pigs to England, Wales or Northern Ireland

Keepers must record the number of pigs kept on their premises at least once a year. For more information see pigs.

Cattle

Born or reared in UK before 1 August 1996

To move cattle of this age you must apply for a movement licence. Each animal’s Certificate of Registration should accompany them when they move.

Movements to markets or dealers won’t be permitted.

Born or reared in UK after 1 July 1996

All cattle born or imported into the UK since 1 July 1996 must have a cattle passport.

Cattle passports include details of:

  • the animal
  • where it has been throughout its life
  • movement cards (if not done electronically)
  • the animal’s death

This passport must always accompany them when they move.

Cattle passports are issued by the British Cattle Movement Service (BCMS). Passport applications must be made within 7 days of tagging. Find out more from Cattle Tracing System.

BCMS can carry out on-farm inspections of records and cattle identification.

For more information on inspections, cattle identification, registration and movement, visit DEFRA.