Animal licensing

On 1 October 2018 new Government regulations came into force that effect animal boarding businesses (including home and day boarders), dog breeders, pet shops, riding establishments and any person keeping or training animals for exhibition.

The changes mean these activities are now covered by a single licence called an ‘animal activity licence’, with new nationally set licence conditions and standards for businesses providing animal related services. 

Businesses operating with these activities will need to comply with the new conditions and will be assessed before a licence is granted. The Department for Food, Environmental and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has issued guidance which provides further information about the new conditions which can be downloaded below. New and existing businesses are encouraged to carefully read the guidance so they are familiar with the new requirements. 

Full guidance is available on the Canine and Feline Sector Group website.

Licences issued in respect of keeping or training animals for exhibition will be issued for a period of three years. For all other activities licences will be issued for either one, two or three years depending on the risk rating given following an inspection. If you are unhappy with your rating you will be able to apply for a re-inspection in order to improve it (a fee will be payable for this).  

The following licences are unaffected:

How to apply and fees

If you have a licence that was in force on 1 October 2018, it will continue to be valid until the expiry date shown on the licence. Prior to the expiry of your current licence you will need to make an application for a licence under the new regulations.  

To apply, please download and complete the appropriate application form below, completed application forms should be emailed together with any additional information to . You can pay for your application with a credit/debit card by contacting Customer First on 01723 232323.

Once you have submitted your complete application you will be contacted by a licensing officer to arrange a suitable date and time for an inspection. If you meet all the requirements, your licence will be granted and forwarded in due course within 10 weeks of a completed application been made. 

All our fees and charges are in one place

Right of appeal

An applicant aggrieved by the refusal of the Council to grant an animal licence or by any condition attached to the grant of such a licence may appeal to a Magistrates Court.