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Animal boarding establishment licensing

To run a boarding kennel or cattery, you need a licence from the local authority. This also applies to home boarding whereby people look after other people's dogs within their home.


Licence summary

The business of providing accommodation for other people's animals as a business including residential dwelling requires a licence by the local authority. The local authority requires applicants to supply the following at the application stage:

  • application form completed in full
  • the fee
  • a plan of the site

What you need to know before applying


  • a business whose main function is not to provide accommodation to animals (example vets)
  • establishments boarding small animals e.g. rabbits, guinea pigs etc.;
  • the keeping of an animal at any premises as a requirement under the Animal Health Act 1981.

Who cannot apply: An applicant must not be disqualified from any of the following at the time of the application:

  • keeping an animal boarding establishment
  • keeping a pet shop
  • keeping animals
  • or have a conviction under the Animal Welfare Act 2006

Duration of the Licence: The licence is valid from the date of issue and continues in force until the end of the year to which it relates and then expires. Therefore a licence granted part way through the year will only remain valid for the remainder of it.

If you are uncertain whether your business requires a licence contact the Applications Processing Team.


Number of animals Fee
1 to 9 £125
10 to 24 £177
25 to 49£260
50 to 74£355
Application to change licence£55
Application to renew licence£81

How to apply

Note: As part of the online process you may be asked to upload documents e.g. public liability insurance or confirm dates when fire fighting appliances were serviced etc. You will not be able to complete and submit the application form without this information.

Apply for licence 

In the event of the death of a licence holder please contact the Applications Processing Team.

What happens next

Target completion period

We will process your application as quickly as possible and, in any event. We aim to process the application within 45 calendar days. Tacit consent does not apply. If you application is refused there is a right of appeal via the licensing sub - committee.

To find out more about the application process [28kb]:

  • the application reviewing process
  • timescales for processing your application
  • if your application is refused
  • or any complaints

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Article utilities:  Bookmark and Share Print Print this page Last updated: 29 Mar 2017 at 15:06