If you wish to provide home boarding for dogs, in kennels or for day care, or provide boarding for cats, you will need a licence.
The assessment of risk and welfare standards in place in relation to the licence, will determine the length of the licence granted and the animal activity star rating accorded to the premises. You can view the scoring matrix which determines this (see page 16). Dependant on the star rating of your premises, you may be granted a 1, 2 or 3 year licence.
There are a number of disqualifications which are set out in Schedule 8 of the Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018. You should familiarise yourself with the disqualifications, as you are not permitted to hold a licence for any animal activity licensing under the regulations if the disqualifications apply to you.
New legislation took effect on 1 October 2018: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2018/486/pdfs/uksi_20180486_en.pdf
How to apply
Complete all the following documents and submit to email@example.com along with the relevant fee:
For details on how we use your data, see the Licensing Team privacy notice.
Fees apply to new and renewal applications and are payable in 2 parts:
- On application, the application fee is due.
- If your licence is granted, a grant fee will become payable to cover such matters as ongoing monitoring and assessment of your compliance with the licence conditions and requirements, anticipated costs of enforcement, the anticipated costs of complying with the reporting obligations to the Secretary of State which the council is permitted to charge operators.
Payment can be made by debit or credit card. To make a payment, email the Licensing Team or call 020 8760 5466.
If your application is refused, you will not be refunded the application fee, as this fee is to cover the assessment of your application, including suitability of licence holder, premises and any associated inspections or checks. If your application is refused, you will not have to pay the grant fee.
Application evaluation process
Once your application is received, a licensing officer will contact you to make arrangements to carry out an inspection of your premises. The officer may be accompanied by an approved animal health inspector or vet.
The purpose of the inspection is to ensure the premises meet the standards required by the guidance notes for conditions for selling animals as pets, which is available under downloads below.
Tacit consent will not apply. Your licence will only be issued to you when all the necessary inspections and checks have been carried out, and the premises meets the required standards as set out in the guidance notes. The application fee will be payable in order to submit your application. If successful, the grant fee will become payable.
Renewal of a licence
If you already hold a licence you will automatically be sent a renewal letter and an application form before your current licence is due to expire.
Refusal of a licence
If you disagree with the decision of the council to refuse to grant or renew a license or to revoke or vary a license, you may appeal to the First-tier Tribunal within 28 days beginning with the day following the date of the decision.
Appeals against star ratings
Any operator who is dissatisfied with their star rating awarded on issue/re-issue/variation of their license may request an appeal against the star rating.
In order to be valid, your written request for an appeal, accompanied by the relevant fee and any supporting documentation and written representations must be received by the council’s licensing team using the details set out below, within 21 days (including weekends and bank holidays) following the issue/reissue/variation of the license.
The appeal will be decided within 21 days (including weekends and bank holidays) from the date the appeal request is received.
The council will determine the outcome of an appeal by considering the paperwork associated with the inspection and the past record of the business. In some circumstances, a further visit to the establishment may be required. The costs of any additional inspections related to the appeal will be borne by the applicant for re-inspection unless it results in a higher rating being awarded.
If you remain dissatisfied following the appeal, you can challenge the outcome of the appeal against the rating by judicial review.
Re-inspections for re-rating purposes
If you have received a star rating of between 1 and 4, have accepted the rating and have made the necessary improvements to address non-compliances identified during the council’s inspection, you may make a written request for a re-inspection.
Any request for a re-inspection should be accompanied by supporting information outlining the case for such re-inspection ie it should indicate the actions that have been taken by to improve the level of compliance or welfare since the inspection and, where appropriate, should include supporting evidence. If the case made by the business is not substantiated or insufficient evidence is provided, the council can refuse to undertake a re-inspection on that basis.
A request for re-inspection must be accompanied by the relevant fee otherwise it will not be processed. The fees required to be paid are in line with the fees set by the council, which are on a full costs recovery basis.
Subject to payment of the relevant fee for re-inspection, the re-inspection should be carried out within 3 months of receipt of the request.
There is no limit to the number of re-inspection visits a business can request, however, there will be a fee for each visit charged at full cost recovery.
Operators should be aware that re-inspection for re-rating purposes could lead to a lower rating being awarded rather than an increase in rating.
Contact the licensing team using the details below.