Animal Welfare Licences

The following activities will need to be licensed by South Staffordshire Council when carried out as a business under the Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018:

  • selling animals as pets
  • boarding for cats or dogs (cattery/kennels) or arranging for the provision of boarding of cats or dogs
  • home Boarding for dogs (including day care for dogs in a home environment)
  • day care for dogs (commercial creche)
  • breeding of dogs
  • keeping or training animals for exhibition
  • hiring out horses.

The licenses are known as an ‘animal activity licence,' with licence conditions set nationally as specified in legislation for businesses providing animal-related services.

Minimum standards specific to the activity being carried out will need to be met prior to a licence being issued. Where higher standards are met, a longer-term licence will be issued for applicants who achieve and maintain higher standards.

Dangerous wild animals and Zoo licensing are not included in these regulations.

Applying for a Licence

To apply for a licence please download the relevant application form below. You are advised to undertake an assessment against the licence conditions prior to application or inspection. This is to prepare for your licence inspection and identify areas for improvement that you can implement to fully comply with conditions and/ or meet the higher standards. This will improve both welfare standards and help you to achieve a higher rating.

Statutory Guidance

Detailed guidance for each licensable activity is provided below. These documents contain extensive information on what will be required to meet the Licence conditions and what steps can be taken to meet the higher animal welfare standards.

Duration of licences

The 2018 regulations introduced enforcement powers for a local authority to suspend, vary or revoke a licence and a risk/star rating system which determines the duration of a licence which may last for 1,2 or 3 years.
Operators will be risk rated against a standard 14 point assessment criteria.
The assessment considers several factors relating to compliance history, complaints, animal welfare and management standards.
A score of 17 or less is rated low risk, a score of 18 or above is rated higher risk. New businesses which do not have a compliance history with a Local Authority or relevant UKAS accredited scheme must be considered higher risk.
The inspection findings and risk rating are fed into the following scoring matrix which determines both the star rating and duration of the licence given to a business.

Risk Scoring Matrix

Application fees

To apply for a licence please use the relevant application form available to download on this page and arrange to pay the appropriate total fee at the time of application (which includes both Part 1 and 2 fees).

All fees have been calculated taking into account the statutory guidance in Regulation 13 which stipulates a full cost recovery model. Fees are broken down as follows:

Type of Activity Part 1 Part 2 Total Fee Comments
Animal Boarding/Dog day care £167 £170 £338
Riding Establishment £229 £194 £423

PLUS vets fee.

If a licence is granted for more than one year the vets fee is payable annually

Dog Breeding £247 £211 £458 PLUS vets fee
Pet Shop £200 £170 £370
Home Boarding £146 £150 £296
Performing Animals £146 £150 £296

PLUS vets fee if the activity being licenced attracts a vets fee.

Additional Activity Charge £135 £125 £260 The additional activity fee is charged to that activity that attracts the lowest licensing fee
Application Assistance fee £175
Minor variation to licence (administration only) £25
Major variation to licence (where an inspection visit is necessary) £98

Part 1 covers the cost of the Council handling your application, carrying out an inspection and determining whether or not a licence should be granted.

Part 2 covers the cost of issuing the licence and conducting an unannounced inspection during the term of the licence (as required by government guidance).

How to pay

The fees for each activity are listed in the table below and as far as possible should be paid online on at, My account on the website

1. Sign in or login as a guest
2. Click “pay for services"
3. Click “pay environmental health and licensing fee"
4. Select “other"
5. Next box- state what the payment is for, i.e. Total Fee payment for cat boarding and follow the remaining instructions for payment.

Please be aware that the fee is the same regardless of duration of the licence, however we are unable to determine the duration until a full assessment has been undertaken.

The Part 1 and Vet inspection fees are non-refundable should your application be unsuccessful.

Risk re- rating and appeals process.

Businesses will be able to request a re-inspection for the purposes of re-evaluating an issued star rating. A request can be made using the Request for a re-inspection visit form.
The business, should outline the case for re-inspection and should indicate the actions that have been taken to improve the level of compliance or welfare since the inspection. If appropriate supporting evidence can be provided, however the case should relate to the actions the Council advises the business should be made in order to receive a higher star rating.

Appeals to a risk rating
A business can dispute the star rating awarded where it is felt the score awarded did not reflect the animal welfare standards and risk levels at the time of the inspection. An appeal can be made using the Request for an Appeal form.
Before submission of an appeal, businesses will be encouraged to discuss their intention to make an appeal with the inspecting Officer before a formal written appeal submission is made. The ‘inspecting Officer will explain how the rating was awarded which may help resolve the need for a formal appeal.
In the event a business is still not satisfied with the risk rating score following an informal discussion with the inspecting Officer, the business can submit a formal appeal in writing to the authority.

Once the Animal Activity Licence has been granted, the premises is listed on a public register, a copy of which is available below. This will be updated regularly during the year.



Telephone: 01902 696000

Other pages in the section

Dangerous Wild Animals

In this section, find out more about licensing requirements relating to dangerous wild animals.

Zoo Licensing

In this section, find out more about zoo licensing.


Get in touch


South Staffs Council

Wolverhampton Road, Codsall

South Staffordshire


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If you are unable to find what you need online today please contact us on 01902 696000.

Mon-Tue,Thu-Fri 09:00am - 17:00pm
Wed 10:00am - 17:00pm
Sat-Sun Closed

Face to Face appointments are available but must be pre booked in advance of your visit by calling 01902 696000.