A new home for 70 capuchin monkeys facing a death sentence in South America can be built near Wool, planners say.
Monkey World applied to Purbeck District Council to replace a monkey house which dated back to the early days of the centre in the mid-1980s with a new 82sqm timber building.
The centre plans to rescue monkeys bred in captivity and currently caged in cramped conditions at a research laboratory in Chile.
The aim is to airlift the monkeys over in groups.
The centre's director Dr Alison Cronin told the council the future for the capuchins is bleak unless action is taken.
She said: "The monkeys are now surplus to requirements and will either be retired or destroyed."
But she said she was confident the capuchins could be successfully rehabilitated after being brought to Dorset.
The application has now been approved, with a planner's report saying the new building was suitable for the proposed purpose - and it would not represent an over-intensification of the site.
The go-ahead has a condition stipulating the monkey house could only be home to capuchins, and should not be used for any other purpose.
Monkey World's founder Jim Cronin, who died in March this year aged 55, was said to have had an early fascination when he grew up in New York with capuchins - the traditional street organ grinder's monkey that he had regularly seen performing near his Yonkers home.