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Guidance on keeping cattle, bison and buffalo in Great Britain

Anyone with responsibility for cattle or other bovine animals must follow the rules and procedures that apply to all cattle keepers.

A cattle keeper is a person who is responsible for cattle, bison or buffalo on a permanent or temporary basis. In official guidance, the term ‘cattle’ always covers all 3 species.

Some examples of cattle keepers are:

  • farmers
  • people who run livestock markets and calf assembly centres
  • transporters
  • those buying and selling cattle
  • people who run slaughterhouses and lairages

There are detailed laws setting out the tasks that cattle keepers must carry out, both before they take responsibility for animals and once animals are in their care.

Register to keep cattle

Keeping cattle and representing keepers

Tagging, passports, record keeping and inspections

Reporting and recording events in your herd

Published 6 May 2014
Last updated 9 April 2020 + show all updates
  1. New page 'Cattle passports: temporary changes to requesting amendments' added.

  2. Added paragraph on legislation

  3. First published.