Dog Boarding , Pet Shop, Dog Breeding and Riding School Licensing

The Microchipping of Dogs (England) Regulations 2015 require all dogs over the age of eight weeks to be microchipped.

If breeders or owners are found with dogs over this age, that have not been chipped, this could result in prosecution or a FPN (Fixed Penalty Notice) of up to £500.

Licences are required for a variety of activities concerning animals. This webpage contains information relating to the following: 

A LIST OF ALL ANIMAL LICENCED PREMISES IS IN THE DOCUMENT LIST

All licences detailed on this webpage require a licence fee to be paid. Our fees and charges can be found here.

Payments can be made using the GOV.UK website or via telephone by calling Environmental Health on 01992 785511. Please note that application fees are non-refundable and charges apply when paying by credit card.

Should you have any queries in relation to the above licences please contact the Environmental Health section using the details at the bottom of this page. 

The following legislation applies:-

§  The Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963

§  The Breeding of Dogs Act 1973

§  The Pet Animals Act 1951

§  The Protection of Animals (Amendment) Act 1954

§  The Protection of Animals (Cruelty to Dogs) (Scotland) Act 1934 

Boarding Animals - The Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963 (Commercial and Domestic Dog Boarding)

A licence is required to operate a Boarding Establishment. The Act defines an Animal Boarding Establishment as a "premises of any nature (including a private dwelling) of a business of providing accommodation for other peoples animals".

Licences are granted annually and always expire on 31 December each year. Licences can be applied for via the GOV.UK website or by downloading an application form from the documents section to the right of the page. Before applying, applicants should also read the conditions document. 
 

Dog Breeders - The Breeding and Sale of Dogs (Welfare) Act 1991 and 1999

Any person who breeds dogs to sell to the general public requires a licence. A breeding establishment is defined as follows:

  • A person keeps a breeding establishment for dogs at any premises if he/she carries on at those premises a business of breeding dogs for sale where, they breed and sell more than two litters in a 12 month period;

  • A person whose bitch or bitches give birth to five or more litters in any 12 month period is presumed to be carrying on a dog breeding business;

  • In general, a breeder whose rate of litter production brings him/her within this category will have to be licensed;

  • Bitches count towards the qualifying total if they are kept at any time during the 12 month period by the applicant/licence holder at the premises at which he/she is carrying on the business of breeding dogs for sale; or if they are kept at those premises by any of his/her relatives;

  • 'Premises' includes a private dwelling.

Licences are granted annually and always expire on 31 December each year. Applications can be made through the GOV.UK website or by downloading the application form to the right of the page. Before applying, applicants should also read the conditions document. 

Wild Animals - The Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976

The Government has published a list of animals that require a licence. A Dangerous Wild Animals Licence will only be granted once the Council is satisfied that keeping a wild animal would not be contrary to public interest on the grounds of safety or nuisance; that the applicant is a suitable person; and the animal's accommodation is adequate and secure. Where the local authority grants a licence it may impose conditions on the licence covering issues such as:

  • A requirement that the animal be kept only by the person or persons named on the licence;

  • Restrictions on the movement of the animal from the premises as specified on the licence;

  • A requirement that the licence-holder has a current insurance policy which ensures both licence holders and others against any liability caused by the animal.

Licence applications may be made through the GOV.UK website. Before applying, applicants should read the legal requirements and basic conditions documents available to the right of the page.
 

Any person who keeps a pet shop must obtain a licence. A licence is granted annually and always expires on 31 December. A pet shop is a 'premises of any nature (including a private dwelling) of a business of selling animals as pets'.

You do not need a pet shop licence if:

  • you sell the offspring of an animal you keep as a pet;
  • you keep only pedigree animals which you breed;
  • you breed pedigree animals or acquire them for show.   

A Pet Shop Licence may be applied for via the GOV.UK website or by downloading the application form to the right of the page. Before applying, applicants should also read the conditions document. 

Riding Establishments - The Riding Establishments Acts 1964 and 1970

Any person who runs riding establishment must obtain a licence. A riding establishment is "a business of keeping horses for either riding or hire, or the purpose of instruction for the return of payment".

A Riding Establishment Licence may be applied for via the GOV.UK website or  by downloading the application form to the right of the page. Before applying, applicants should also read the conditions document. 

Responsible Dog Ownership

You should ensure your pet dog does not cause noise nuisance to your neighbours.  DEFRA has produced a "is your dog barking too much" leaflet which is available in the related links section.

Planning Requirements

Your application for a licence will need to consider whether planning permission is required for the proposed licensed activity. Licence applicants should contact the Council's Planning Section on 01992 785555 to discuss whether permission will be needed.