New animal licensing rules

Rebecca Wilkinson

Nov. 2, 2018

Allerdale Borough Council’s Licensing Committee agreed new regulations for animal licenses on 31 October 2018. 

The new rules ensure the council’s licensing activities comply with recently introduced Animal Welfare Regulations which came into effect on 1 October 2018. These rules amend or repeal a suite of legislation. 

The new tougher rules which seeks to improve standards in animal care relate to the licensing of a number of animal-related activities including: animal boarding establishments, dog day care, dog breeders, riding establishments, the sale of animals and performing animals. 

As a result of the changes, the majority of animal-related licensing activities will now be covered by one regulation, with conditions set nationally rather than locally under the old regime. However, license fees will be set locally on a cost recovery basis. 

The other main change is the introduction of a star-rating system for businesses, based on compliance with the regulations. These ratings will be available on the council’s website. Licenses will be issued on a one, two or three year basis depending on compliance, star rating and other factors. Business owners will be provided with advice on how to improve their standards and star rating. 

The definition of a dog breeder is also changing, with the number of litters in a year dropping from five to three. Anyone making a profit from dog breeding may also need to be licensed. In addition, online pet shops based within the council’s area will need to be licensed. 

Council officers will undertake formal training as part of the new rules, and they will now have to submit statutory returns to the government. 

Speaking at the meeting, chair Angela Kendall, said: “It is really important to ensure animals are treated in the right conditions, and this new policy goes a long way to achieve that.”