The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018 apply to:
- Animal boarding
- Selling animals as pets
- Hiring out horses
- Breeding dogs
- Keeping or training animals for exhibition
These regulations mean that all licence holders will need to follow an application process and comply with national regulations. As part of this, you will also receive a rating based on your standard, which you will need to display on your premises.
The rating will be between 1 and 5, with 5 being the best you can receive.
Guidance on the regulations:
The regulations don’t apply to dangerous wild animal or zoo licences.
Renew, change or apply for an animal licence
For more information email email@example.com.
Before granting or renewing a licence we must consider whether the conduct displayed by the applicant indicates that they are a fit and proper person to carry out the licensable activity and meet their licence conditions.
The general conditions that businesses must meet in order to obtain an animal activity licence centre around the 5 welfare needs as set out in the Animal Welfare Act (2006). These are:
- Its need for a suitable environment
- Its need for a suitable diet
- Its need to be able to exhibit normal behaviour patterns
- Any need it has to be housed with, or apart from, other animals
- Its need to be protected from pain, suffering, injury and disease
An applicant must not be disqualified from any of the following at the time of the application:
- Owning or keeping animals
- Selling animals
- Transporting animals
- Working with animals
- Running a service which involves being in charge of animals
Application evaluation process
Once we receive your application we will:
- Acknowledge it within 3 working days
- Request all supporting documents
- Carry out a site visit
- Notify you of our decision
We will only grant your licence if you comply with all objectives and conditions.
If we need a veterinary inspection of your establishment as part of the application process, you will have to pay for the inspection.
If we do not grant your licence, we will not refund your licence fee or any veterinary inspection charges.
We aim to issue a decision on an application within 10 weeks of receiving it.
Information on the processing of applications:
Will tacit consent apply?
No. It is in the public interest that the authority must process your application before it can be granted. If you have not heard from us within a reasonable period, please contact us. You can do this online here if you applied through the UK Welcomes service or use the contact details below.
Animal licences feesAnimal licences fees for April 2023 to March 2024 by licence type.
|Dangerous wild animals||£417.40|
|Dog home boarding||£289.50|
|Dog day care||£289.50|
Animal licences additional grant feesAn additional grant fee is charged after a satisfactory inspection and prior to issuing your licence. If we refuse the licence, this grant fee will not be charged, and the original application fee will not be refunded.
A veterinarian is required for the initial inspection of a dog breeding establishment, and a listed veterinarian for initial and annual inspections of horse-riding establishments. An officer has the right to enlist a veterinarian at any time they feel necessary. This could be for welfare issues or complaints of that nature.
Appealing a star rating
Under the Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018, businesses have 21 days, including weekends and bank holidays, following the issue of their licence in which to appeal the star rating.
The appeal should be made in writing or by email to us within this time. However, in the first instance, please discuss any disputes informally with the inspecting officer so that there is an opportunity to help explain how the rating was worked out.
Failed application or licence holder redress
The local authority must consider any comments or conduct made by the applicant when deciding whether or not to approve a new licence or a renewal. We may refuse to issue any licence if we:
- Think the applicant is not capable of meeting their licence conditions
- Think that granting a licence might negatively affect the welfare, health or safety of the animals involved in the activity
- Think the accommodation, staffing or management are inadequate for the animals’ wellbeing or for the activity or establishment to be run properly
- If the applicant has been disqualified from holding a licence as per Schedule 8 of the Regulations
If the business disagrees with our decision, they can raise the issue with the head of the licensing department. If the matter cannot be resolved, the business has recourse to our complaints procedure.
If the business disagrees with the outcome, they can challenge our decision by means of judicial review. The business also has recourse to the local authority complaints procedure, including taking the matter to the Local Government Ombudsman where appropriate, if they consider that our service has not been properly delivered.
All issues or concerns can be raised with the Licensing Team:
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org
- Call 01992 564034