Is it Legal to Own a Lion in Dubai?

  • Publish date: Saturday، 26 March 2022
Is it Legal to Own a Lion in Dubai?

For some in the oil-rich Gulf State, owning the likes of a cheetah or a lion or an endangered animal is a status symbol, but they now risk jail or a fine.

Big cats have been pictured being taken on walks in social media postings. Past pictures featured lions in the back of cars, and videos showing tigers on a beach in Dubai.

Unsurprisingly, officials are concerned about the dangers posed by freely roaming animals.

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has outlawed the keeping of wild animals such as lions or tigers, as pets.

The new law bans dealing in and ownership of "all types of wild and domesticated but dangerous animals. These animals can now only be kept in zoos, wildlife parks, circuses, and breeding and research centres.

Anyone who takes a big cat or any other kind of exotic animal out in public will face up to six months in jail and a fine of up to 500,000 dirhams ($136,000; £110,883).

Keepers of more traditional pets will also be affected by the new law. Dog owners will have to obtain permits and keep their animals on the lead in public.

Failure to do so could trigger a fine of up to 100,000 dirhams. The same penalty applies to owners who fail to vaccinate their dogs against dangerous diseases.

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