States Vet (FOI)
States Vet (FOI) Produced by the Freedom of Information office
Authored by Government of Jersey and published on 19 July 2022.
Prepared internally, no external costs.
Please advise the following:
During 2021 how many days was there a States vet present on the island?
During 2022 how many days has there been a states vet present on the island?
What law allows a dog coming into Jersey to be taken away?
Which vet has supervised euthanasia at the abattoir during 2021/2?
Has a States vet always been present at the abattoir during slaughter days?
Which Minister has been responsible for the States Vet office?
Why does Jersey follow UK legislation regarding the movement of pets? How long has Jersey followed UK legislation?
A and B
The Government of Jersey does not maintain a list regarding the number of days that the States Veterinary Officer (SVO) was present on the island; therefore Article 10 of the Freedom of Information (Jersey) Law 2011 applies.
However, the following information is held by the Animal Health and Welfare section for 2021 and 2022.
- SVO was off-island from around 18 November 2020 to 8 March 2021 (due to Covid restrictions which advised that people work from home if possible)
- SVO was on-island January 2022 to 22 June 2022 when they left post (except for meetings off-island and annual leave).
It should be noted that there is an interim SVO who works two days a week and is based off-island.
There is also a Deputy Chief Veterinary Officer and an assistant in post to cover whilst a new SVO is appointed.
Detailed below are the various pieces of legislation that apply regarding the potential removal of a commercial or non-commercial dog when they are brought into the island.
Non-commercial dog (Pet)
If a non-commercial dog is non-compliant with the Pet Travel Scheme (Jersey) Regulations 2011 it will be detained and isolated in quarantine for up to four months until such time as it becomes a compliant dog or it will be exported from Jersey.
(for example a dog that was imported in order to sell or pass it to a new owner e.g. re-homing)
When a non-compliant commercial dog is landed in Jersey under a rabies quarantine licence it should be detained and isolated in quarantine for up to four months in accordance with the following legislation.
- The Diseases of Animals (Rabies) (Importation of Mammals) (Jersey) Order 2011 (Article 4)
- Diseases of Animals (Non-Rabies) (Importation of Mammals) (Jersey) Order 2011, Article 3(3)
However, the Minister for the Environment may release the dog or waiver its period of quarantine, if satisfied that such release will give a negligible risk of the introduction of rabies or tapeworm to the island.
This will only be considered if the dog is compliant under the Pet Travel Scheme (Jersey) Regulations 2011.
It should be noted that anyone detaining a dog upon arrival into the island must be appointed as an Inspector by the Minister under the relevant legislation.
The Government of Jersey employs an official veterinarian who is required to be present at the abattoir, to carry out any ante and post-mortem animal inspections, when the abattoir is open.
The States Vet or any other approved vet can cover in the absence of the official Vet, for example Guernsey's States Vet has also covered on the rare occasion when they have been required.
It should be noted that the abattoir will not open if there is no vet available.
The name of the official vet is exempt from release under Article 25 (Personal Information) of the Freedom of Information (Jersey) Law 2011.
The States Vet is only present when covering for the official vet as detailed in response to question D.
The Minister for the Environment is responsible for the appointment of the States Veterinary Officer.
Jersey is part of the British Islands which includes Great Britain, Northern Ireland, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man and all have the same import requirements. A common travel area to allow pets to move freely is in place.
Once a pet has cleared the relevant controls upon their initial entry into Jersey from outside of the British Islands or is already resident in Jersey then it may move freely between all of the British Islands without the need for specific treatments or extensive travel documents.
If Jersey did not apply the same rules as the British Islands, then Jersey pets may be required to meet the pet travel scheme requirements. For example, a pet dog would need to comply with the following requirements before it arrived at its British Islands destination or incur the specified restrictions:
- needs to be microchipped prior to travel
- needs to have received valid rabies and tapeworm vaccinations, as necessary, within the specified period prior to arrival
- obtain an animal health certificate for each movement
- age restrictions may apply i.e., dogs would have to be at least 12 weeks old before they could have a rabies vaccination and then wait 3 weeks before they may travel
- Dogs may have to enter the mainland using a travellers point of entry so that official checks can be carried out.
There may also be other unforeseen consequences for dogs moving to other countries outside of the British Islands.
Jersey has followed the same rules as the UK for many years.
Article 10 - Obligation of scheduled public authority to confirm or deny holding Information
(1) Subject to paragraph (2), if –
(a) a person makes a request for information to a scheduled public authority; and
(b) the authority does not hold the information, it must inform the applicant accordingly.
Article 25 - Personal information
(1) Information is absolutely exempt information if it constitutes personal data of which the applicant is the data subject as defined in the Data Protection (Jersey) Law 2005.
(2) Information is absolutely exempt information if –
(a) it constitutes personal data of which the applicant is not the data subject as defined in the Data Protection (Jersey) Law 2005; and
(b) its supply to a member of the public would contravene any of the data protection principles, as defined in that Law.