Animal Establishment Licensing

Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018

Change to licensing regulations

The Government has recently published the Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018 under section 13 of the Animal Welfare Act 2006. The effect of the new regulations is to replace some existing licensing regimes and to put in place a new licensing regime to control the following licensable activities:

  • Selling animals as pets
  • Providing or arranging for the provision of boarding for cats or dogs
  • Hiring out horses
  • Breeding dogs
  • Keeping or training animals for exhibition

The regulations came into effect on 1 October 2018 and introduce a new licensing regime to replace the licensing and registration regimes previously in place under the following legislation:

  • Pet Animals Act 1951
  • Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963
  • Riding Establishments Acts 1964 & 1970
  • Breeding of Dogs Act 1973 & Breeding and Sale of Dogs (Welfare) Act 1999  
  • Performing Animals (Regulation) Act 1925

Guidance from DEFRA

The Department for Food, Environment and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has published procedural guidance for local authorities in relation to the new regulations, along with guidance notes on the conditions that will apply to licences issued to authorise the different licensable activities. The procedural and other guidance notes, together with the relevant licence application forms, can be viewed and downloaded below.

Application forms and currently licensed establishments

Application form Guidance notes Currently licensed establishments
*Standard applicant form (DOC) (*must accompany every licence application) N/A  
Apply for a licence to breed dogs (DOC) Guidance notes for conditions for breeding dogs (PDF)  
Apply for a licence for commercial provision of boarding for dogs (DOC) Guidance notes for conditions for providing boarding in kennels for dogs (PDF) View licensed kennels and catteries
Apply for a licence for the provision of home boarding for dogs (DOC) Guidance notes for conditions for providing home boarding for dogs (PDF) View licensed dog home boarders
Apply for a licence for the provision of daycare for dogs (DOC) Guidance notes for conditions for providing day care for dogs (PDF)  
Apply for a licence for commercial provision of boarding for cats (DOC) Guidance notes for conditions for providing boarding for cats (PDF) View licensed kennels and catteries
Apply for a licence to sell animals as pets (DOC) Guidance notes for conditions for selling animals as pets (PDF)  
Apply for a licence to hire out horses (DOC) Guidance notes for conditions for hiring out horses (PDF)  
N/A Guidance notes for conditions for keeping or training animals for exhibition (PDF)  
N/A Local authority procedural guidance notes (PDF)  

Frequently asked questions

 

Last updated: 14 February 2019