Animal licensing

Apply for a licence to provide home boarding for dogs

Under The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018, a licence is required to board dogs in your home as part of a business.

When is a licence needed?

A licence will be required if you are:

  • providing boarding for dogs as part of a business and earning a commission or any fee (even if small)
  • arranging boarding for dogs as part of a business and earning a commission or fee

Are there any exceptions?

The following examples are considered out of scope and do not require a licence:

  • If no payment is made to the boarder you are not required to have a licence. However, if you are boarding on behalf of a business who earns a fee for arranging the board, you would have to be inspected in order for the business’ licence to be granted. There will be a charge for this inspection.
  • If the dog remains in its own home, for example, dog sitting
  • If the primary purpose of the dog being boarded is something else, for example, a veterinary practice where the dog is being boarded as part of its medical treatment

What should I consider?

Full details are available in the guidance notes below: 

The following may also be of special interest:

  • The number of dogs that you can be licensed for will depend on the number of rooms in your property that have a secure full height door and window. The full details including exceptions are listed under 3.2 in the guidance. Upstairs rooms can now be considered with the exception of children’s bedrooms (under 16 years). Your own dog(s) must be allocated their own room where applicable.
  • The number of dogs permitted on your premises is as stated on your licence. No further dogs may be allowed onto the premises for any period of time. This includes dogs that are not being boarded such as those being walked only.

How to apply

Complete the following online form:

Apply for an animal activity licence

How to pay

The application fee is payable when you have completed the online form. Only the application fee needs to be paid at this time. The grant fee for the issue of the licence is payable following inspection.

Fees

Home boarding for dogs

Up to six dogs:
  • Application fee including renewals - £137.80
  • Additional costs - Vet fees where applicable throughout the duration of the licence. Recharged at cost.
  • Licence grant fee for one year - £198.50
  • Licence grant fee for two years - £270.10
  • Licence grant fee for three years - £336.30
Seven to ten dogs: 
  • Application fee including renewals - £154.40
  • Additional costs - Vet fees where applicable throughout the duration of the licence. Recharged at cost.
  • Licence grant fee for one year - £198.50
  • Licence grant fee for two years - £270.10
  • Licence grant fee for three years - £336.30
11+ dogs:
  •  Application fee including renewals - £170.90
  • Additional costs - Vet fees where applicable throughout the duration of the licence. Recharged at cost.
  • Licence grant fee for one year - £198.50
  • Licence grant fee for two years - £270.10
  • Licence grant fee for three years - £336.30
Arranger - main person:
  • Application fee including renewals - £88.70
  • Licence grant fee for one year - £198.50
  • Licence grant fee for two years - £270.10
  • Licence grant fee for three years - £336.30
In scope carer:
  • Application fee including renewals - £88.20
  • Additional costs - Vet fees where applicable throughout the duration of the licence. Recharged at cost
  • Licence grant fee for one year - £198.50
  • Licence grant fee for two years - £270.10
  • Licence grant fee for three years - £336.30
Out of scope carer:
  • Application fee including renewals - £88.20

Variation of licence

  • Application fee - £60.60
  • Vets fees where applicable and recharged at cost plus £85 inspection fee if required.

Minor variation

  • Minor administrative change (for example, name change or additional carer name) - £16.50

Transfer due to death of licensee

  • Application fee - £60.60

Re-evaluation of star rating

  • Application fee - £49.60
  • Inspection fee - £93.70

Copy of licence

  • Application fee - £11.60

Combination of licensable activities

  • Application fee - Highest fee combined with 50% of lowest application fee.
  • Additional costs - Vets fees as required recharged at cost.
  • Licence grant fee for one year - Highest fee combined with 50% of lowest application fee.
  • Licence grant fee for two years - Highest fee combined with 50% of lowest application fee.
  • Licence grant fee for three years - Highest fee combined with 50% of lowest application fee.

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