Do I need a Licence?
If a person keeps bitches at any premises and they give birth to 5 or more litters during a period of 12 months, they must obtain a Dog Breeding Licence. This includes bitches kept:
by any person at the premises
by any relative of the person at the premises
elsewhere by the person
anywhere by the person under a breeding arrangement/contact with another person
As with the Animal Boarding licensed premises, Dog Breeding establishments are inspected by Veterinary Surgeons to see that they are suitable in respect of the welfare of the dogs.
Applicants must not have been previously disqualified under the:
Dog Breeding Acts of 1973 & 1999 from keeping a breeding establishment
Pet Animals Act 1951 from keeping a pet shop
Protection of Animals (Amendment) Act 1965 from having the custody of animals
Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963 from the boarding of animals
Animal Welfare Act 2006, section 34(2)(3) or (4).
A summary of the eligibility criteria for this licence
Breeding of Dogs Act 1991
Breeding and Sale of Dogs (Welfare) Act 1999
The Breeding of Dogs (Licensing Records) Regulations 1999
Application Evaluation Process
To apply for a Dog Breeding Licence, applicants must complete and submit an application form.
Applicants that have not previously been licensed to breed dogs at their current establishment must have the premises inspected by both a veterinary surgeon/practitioner and an officer of the Council. For those applicants which have previously been granted a licence to breed dogs, an inspection will be undertaken by either an officer of the Council or veterinary surgeon/practitioner, or both.
In determining whether to grant an application for a Dog Breeding Licence the Authority will take into consideration:
whether the dogs have access to suitable accommodation at all time with regard to the construction and size of the quarters, number of occupants, ventilation, cleanliness, exercise facilities, temperature and lighting
whether the dogs will be suitably fed, watered, visited and supplied with adequate bedding material
that all reasonable steps are in place to prevent and control the spread of infectious/contagious diseases
that all reasonable steps will be taken to protect the animals in the event of a fire or other emergency
that the dogs will be suitably cared for when being transported to and from the breeding establishment, i.e. food, drink, bedding, exercise
that bitches are not mated if they are less than one year old
that bitches do not give birth to more than 6 litters of puppies each
that bitches do not give birth more than once in a 12 month period.
Licensed breeders are also required to keep a breeding record which is subject to scrutiny and helps prevent ‘puppy farming’. Licensed breeders must keep careful records and puppies which are sold need to carry identity.
Each licence is subject to standard conditions that are imposed on all dog breeding establishments licensed by the Council.
In addition to the standard conditions a licence may also contain special conditions that are only applicable to your premises.
Once the licence is granted it is valid up to 1 year and is renewable annually. A fee is required upon application
Will Tacit Consent Apply?
No - it is in the public interest that the authority must process your application before it can be granted, however, the Council will endeavour to process your application within a reasonable timescale. If you have not heard from us within 14 days of your inspection, please contact the Licensing Unit.
For information on the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991, see the website for the Office of Public Sector Information.
This facility is not currently available
If you require an application form you can download a copy from the related documents section on this page. Alternatively please contact the Environmental Health & Licensing Team.
There is a fee upon application, please check the Schedule of Fees
Renewing your licence
Renewal applications must be received before the expiry of the current licence.
Failed Application Redress
In the first instance, contact the Local Authority.
Any applicant who is refused a licence or wishes to appeal against any conditions attached to a licence can appeal to their local Magistrates Court.
We would always advise that in the event of a complaint the first contact is made with the trader by you - preferably in the form of a letter (with proof of delivery). If that has not worked, you should contact the Licensing Unit for advice.
If you require any further information, please contact Customer Services on 01643 703704, email on email@example.com or via the licensing service online form.
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