Animal activity licences

You will need to have a licence for the following activities:

  • Dog breeding
  • Dog or cat boarding (including dog day care)
  • Selling animals as pets
  • Hiring horses (e.g. horse riding lessons)
  • Keeping or training animals for exhibition

Businesses will be issued a star rating (1-5) that reflects standards. This will be shown on the licence.

National conditions set the out minimum standards required to obtain a licence. Higher standards are also specified. These are optional but the only way to achieve a higher star rating.

How much does it cost?

Licence fees will depend on the type of activity and length of licence. Please see our  Animal Activity Licence Fees 2022-2023.

Veterinary Inspection fees are recharged at cost.

Applications for dog breeding or hiring of horses will always include a veterinary inspection. In addition, an annual veterinary inspection is required at licensed establishments where hiring of horses takes place.

Guidance notes for the above licence applications

How To Apply

You will need to:

  • log into your MyAccount (or create an account if you don't already have one) to complete the form. MyAccount is an easier and quicker way to interact with us and is available 24/7
  • complete the application form
  • upload any supporting documents
  • pay the appropriate fee

Dog breeding application

Dog or cat boarding application

Selling animals as pets application

Hiring of horses application

Keeping or training animals for exhibition application

Licence Duration

Licences are issued for 1,2 or 3 years. Businesses with a higher star rating will receive a longer licence.

Licences to keep or train animals for exhibition do not receive a star rating and are issued for three years.

Licence renewals

Dog breeding renewal

Dog or cat boarding renewal

Selling animals as pets renewal

Hiring of horses renewal

Keeping or training animals for exhibition renewal

What Happens Next?

We will get in touch if we need any additional information.

We aim to organise an inspection of the premises in 10 working days. This may take longer if a vet inspection is required. The inspection will assess whether you can meet the licence conditions.

If we are satisfied that the minimum conditions can be met, we will write to inform you of the decision. You must pay the part B fee before the licence is issued.

If we refuse your application, we will write to you explaining the reasons why and how you can appeal.

Further Inspections

We may carry our further inspections during the term of your licence to ensure that conditions are being met.

Establishments carrying out hiring of horses will receive an annual veterinary inspection.