Apply for or Renew Multiple Animal Activities


Use this service to apply for or renew more than one animal activities licence type such as:

  • breeding dogs
  • selling animals as pets
  • providing or arranging for the provision of boarding for cats or dogs
  • hiring out horses
  • keeping or training animals for exhibition

For more information on each activity see the DEFRA guidance.

The Animal Licensing Regulations 2018 were made by the Secretary of State under section 13 of the Animal Welfare Act 2006. The effect of the new licensing regime is to improve the effectiveness of existing regulations and to simplify the application and inspection process for businesses, as well as maintaining and improving existing animal welfare standards.

Lucy’s Law

On the 6 April 2020 the Government introduced landmark new legislation to tackle the low-welfare, high volume supply of puppies and kittens, by banning their commercial third-party sale in England.

‘Lucy’s Law’ means that anyone wanting to get a new puppy or kitten in England must now buy direct from a breeder or consider adopting from a rescue centre instead. Licensed dog breeders are required to show puppies interacting with their mothers in their place of birth. If a business sells puppies or kittens without a licence, they could receive an unlimited fine or be sent to prison for up to six months.


Who can apply 

You must be aged 16 or over. 



You may not get a licence if you’ve been disqualified or had a licence refused, revoked or cancelled for an animal health or welfare offence. For more information see the The Animal Licensing Regulations 2018.



You will be required to provide the following: 

  • a plan of the premises
  • standard operating procedures 
  • an emergency response plan 
  • an infection control procedure 
  • a preventative health care plan

You need a designated key holder who has access to all animal areas of the business. They must at all times be within reasonable travel distance of the premises and available to attend in an emergency.

You may need to prove that you have suitable qualifications and experience in animal management.


Public liability insurance

Public liability insurance covers you for claims made against you by members of the public.

If your business accidentally causes injury or property damage to a member of the public, your business could face hefty legal fees and compensation costs. This is where having a policy is so important, picking up the bill and keeping your business up and running.

Keeping or training animals

You must hold valid public liability insurance in respect of the licensable activity of keeping or training animals for exhibition.

Hiring out horses

You must hold a valid certificate of public liability insurance which insures you:

  • against liability for any injury sustained by, and the death of, any client, and insures any client
  • against liability for any injury sustained by, and the death of, any other person caused by or arising out of the hire of the horse.

Dog breeding, boarding for cats and dogs and selling animals as pets

It's not mandatory for these businesses to hold public liability insurance; however, it may be worth considering if your business involves frequent interaction with the public.

Record keeping 

You must keep records for at least three years beginning with the date on which the record was created.

Boarding for cats and dogs

You must to keep a register available for inspection by a vet or other council-approved officer, containing:

  • a description of all the animals you’ve kept
  • their arrival and departure dates
  • the name and address of their owners

Breeding dogs and keeping or training animals for exhibition

You must keep a register containing a description of all the animals.

Selling animals as pets

You must keep a register of all the maintained animals or, in the case of fish, all the groups of fish, on the premises.

Hiring out horses 

You must keep a register of all horses kept for the licensable activity on the premises and each horse’s valid passport showing its unique equine life number and microchip number.


We will inspect your premises before giving you a licence and may inspect any time after your licence is granted to check that the animals are kept in suitable conditions that meet health, welfare and safety standards.

Check if you need planning permission

You may need planning permission for your business.

You’ll probably need planning permission if you want to:

  • build something new
  • make a major change to your building, such as building an extension
  • change the use of your building

If your project needs planning permission and you do the work without getting it, you can be served an ‘enforcement notice’ ordering you to undo all the changes you have made.

To find out if your business premises will need planning permission.


Find out how much your licence will cost.

Animal Activity Licence fees are broken down into two parts:-

Part A covers the cost of deciding the licence application. This includes administration and inspection costs. 

Part B covers the cost of issuing the licence. 

Your licence will not be issued until all fees have been paid, this means the application fee (part a), the grant fee (part b) and veterinary fees.

A single Animal Activity Licence will cover all animal activities carried out at the specified premises.

How to apply for or renew a licence

You will need to meet all aspects of the The Animal Licensing Regulations 2018 and The DEFRA guidance for your licence to be granted.   

Please ensure you read the regulations and guidance before you apply.  

Download and fill in the form  (DOCX, 127.7 KB)

You can use this form to apply for more than one animal activities licence type.

Pay online

You’ll need your debit or credit card details

Pay online

Send the form to us


Post to: Gloucester City Council, Community Wellbeing Team, PO Box 2017, Pershore, WR10 9BJ

If you send paperwork in by post we may not be able to collect it, therefore, we cannot guarantee when it will be processed. Gloucester City Council are supporting flexible working to ensure the safety of staff during this time.

What happens next 

Your application will be assessed and we may contact you for more information. 

You'll be visited by an inspector who will inspect your premises. The inspector will look at the animals and their environment and refer to the DEFRA guidance

A Star Rating will be issued following inspection. The overall score will determine the star rating and the length of the licence. This does not apply to keeping or training animals for exhibition, a licence for this activity only will be issued for a period of three years. 

Your licence will be issued when all necessary fees have been paid.