THE DEFRA imposed deadline of June 30 by which all horse owners in the UK should have applied for horse passports is fast approaching.

As of June 30 the owners of all horses, ponies and donkeys will need a passport before they move their animal.

In this instance moving an animal includes using it for the purpose of competition or breeding, selling it or presenting it for slaughter.

The passports are intended to help keep antibiotic residues out of the food chain by making those responsible observe withdrawal periods for horse medicines.

European law requires the UK to introduce horse passports or face being banned from using up to 75% of medicines currently employed including popular ones such as ‘bute‘.

Owners of horses, ponies and donkeys need apply to one of the Passport Issuing Organisations approved by DEFRA or one of the devolved administrations.

To find out more about the system follow the link:

www.defra.gov.uk/animalh/tracing/horses_q&a.htm