Georgetown Law
Georgetown Law Library

International and Foreign Animal Law Research Guide

This guide helps researchers locate information on animal law in an international and foreign law context focusing on law that addresses welfare issues of companion animals, farm animals and animals used in research.

Foreign Laws

Usually, the best place to start research on foreign legislation is the Foreign Law Guide. The Foreign Law Guide is arranged by country and outlines major laws on a given subject. The subject "Animals and Animal Welfare" is included for each of the jurisdictions, but this relevant subject is blank for the majority of jurisdictions. Since the Foreign Law Guide is not a viable source for information on animal law, you may have to turn to the Internet and to secondary sources such as journal articles and books to locate foreign legislation on the topic. Be aware that you may only find summaries of laws, or that a reliable English-language translation may not be available.

WorldLII, while not having materials for all countries, can sometime have case law and legislation as well as links to other relevant resources. There is no subject heading for animals, however sometimes within a jurisdiction or a topic there is relevant information (e.g. in the Mexican legal research guide there is mention of the Protections of Animals Act.) In addition, if you click on advance search you can search by "All Legislation Databases".

Animal welfare legislation from various countries can be found scattered across various websites. The "World Materials" page of the Animal Legal and Historical Center is one example of a site that collects laws from several countries. Below is a list of national laws on animal welfare that are written in English, have been translated into English, or have English summaries. Please note how current the laws below are, will vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, so they are best thought of as a starting point to be updated by further research.