UAE to ban the ownership of ‘exotic dangerous animals’

United Arab Emirates’ FNC (Federal National Council) new draft law to regulate the ownership of dangerous wild animals carries tough penalties, including fines and imprisonment.The United Arab Emirates’ FNC (Federal National Council) passed a draft law last week to regulate the ownership of dangerous wild animals.

The law aims to stop individuals from owning, trading, and breeding all types of dangerous wild animals. Not only will this ensure the welfare of wild animals, but it will protect humans as well.

The penalties are tough: large fines and even imprisonment. The new law also encourages people to report any abandoned animals to the authorities or to the nearest police station.

Once the law is put into practice, current owners of exotic animals will have to hand these animals over to authorities within six months.

In 2011 the emirate of Ajman banned owning wild animals, exotic pets, and reptiles. In November 2014 the emirate of Sharjah banned the trade and possession of exotic wild animals. IFAW welcomes the steps made by UAE government to adopt new legislation regulating the ownership of dangerous animals.

The UAE has always shown that it is a leader in the Middle East region in adopting the proper legislations to protect animals. This will be an important addition to the UAE animal welfare laws and the law regulating the international trade in endangered species.

We hope other countries adopt similar laws.

IFAW is working in the UAE and other MENA countries, to raise awareness about wildlife trafficking, the risk of owning exotic pets, and buying wildlife products. We do this through our work with various levels of governments as well as through our Animal Action Education program which reaches thousands of teachers and students.


Learn more about our Animal Action Education program.

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Azzedine Downes,IFAW President and CEO
President and Chief Executive Officer
Beth Allgood, Country Director, United States
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Cynthia Milburn, Director, Animal Welfare Outreach & Education
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Dr. Joseph Okori
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Faye Cuevas, Esq.
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Grace Ge Gabriel, Regional Director, Asia
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Jason Bell, Vice President for Conservation and Animal Welfare
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Patrick Ramage, Program Director, Whales
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Rikkert Reijnen, Program Director, Wildlife Crime
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