Animal premises licences

It is a legal requirement for certain types of businesses where animals are kept, sold or displayed to be licensed. All licences for South Norfolk are granted at our discretion. You may also require planning permission to change the use of your premises.

If you are operating a business boarding cats and/or dogs, in most cases you will need to be licensed by us under the Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963. This also applies to home boarding and to businesses offering a Dog Day Care service.

The licence runs for a calendar year and has an annual fee of £67.60. 

To apply for a licence please complete the animal boarding establishment application form or the animal home boarding application form or the doggy day care establishment application form

Once you have completed the application form, please return it to us by email or by post to the Food and Safety Team, South Norfolk Council, South Norfolk House, Cygnet Court, Long Stratton, Norwich, NR15 2XE, along with the relevant application fee.

An officer will contact you upon receipt of the application to organise a suitable date and time to visit your business. 

If you are running a dog breeding business, a licence will be required under the Breeding and Sale of Dogs (Welfare) Act 1999, if:

  • You breed and sell more than two litters in a 12 month period or;
  • During any 12 month period, five or more litters are born to bitches which are:
    • Kept by you at any premises during any period of 12 months
    • Kept by any relative of yours at those premises
    • Kept by you elsewhere
    • Kept by any person under a breeding arrangement with you.

You must not mate any bitches until they are one year old and they must not give birth to more than six litters in their lifetime or have more than one litter a year. You must also keep accurate breeding records, to be available to us at any time.

The licence runs for a calendar year and has an annual fee of £58.00. Please note there is an additional fee for the veterinary inspection, which is charged at cost.

To apply for a dog breeding licence please complete the dog breeding establishment application form and return it by email or by post to the Food and Safety Team, South Norfolk Council, South Norfolk House, Cygnet Court, Long Stratton, Norwich, NR15 2XE, along with the relevant fee.

An officer will contact you upon receipt of the application to organise a suitable date and time to visit your business. 

The Pet Animals Act 1951 protects the welfare of animals sold as pets and requires anyone keeping a pet shop to be licensed by their local council.

The licence runs for a calendar year and has an annual fee of £54.10.

To apply for a pet shop licence please complete the pet shop application form, and return it by email or by post to the Food and Safety Team, South Norfolk Council, South Norfolk House, Cygnet Court, Long Stratton, Norwich, NR15 2XE, along with the relevant application fee.

An officer will contact you upon receipt of the application to organise a suitable date and time to visit your business. 

If you run a business where horses and/or ponies are being let out for riding, or used to provide instruction in riding in return for payment, you will require a licence under the Riding Establishments Act 1964 and 1970.

We will take into account:

  • The suitability of the applicant
  • The accommodation and pasture
  • The adequacy of the provision for the animals health, welfare and exercise
  • The precautions against disease and fire
  • Whether the horses/ponies are suitable for the activities provided.

The welfare of the animals is linked to the safety of the riders. We must be assured, as well as customers, that the establishment has the welfare of the horse/pony and the safety of the rider at the centre of its business.

The annual licensing inspection is carried out by both a local authority officer and a veterinarian.

The licence has an annual fee of £63.80. There is an additional fee for the veterinary inspection, which is charged at cost.

To apply for a riding establishment licence please complete the riding establishment application form and return it by email or by post to the Food and Safety Team, South Norfolk Council, South Norfolk House, Cygnet Court, Long Stratton, Norwich, NR15 2XE, along with the relevant application fee.

An officer will contact you upon receipt of the application to organise a suitable date and time to visit your business. 

Under the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976, if you wish to keep a dangerous wild animal, this must be done in such a way that it creates no risk to the public. You must also ensure the welfare of the animal.

A licence is required for any animal which appears on the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976 (Modification) (No.2) Order 2007 schedule and are issued by the local council.

The licensing inspections are carried out by a veterinary surgeon who has sufficient knowledge about the species proposed to be kept. The report, along with other items are considered before the licence will be granted.

The licence runs for two calendar years and costs £91.30. There is an additional fee for the veterinary inspection, which is charged at cost.

To apply for a dangerous wild animals licence please complete the dangerous wild animals application form and return it by email or by post to the Food and Safety Team, South Norfolk Council, South Norfolk House, Cygnet Court, Long Stratton, Norwich, NR15 2XE, along with the relevant application fee.

An officer will contact you upon receipt of the application to organise a suitable date and time to visit your business. 

Under the Zoo Licensing Act 1981, a zoo is defined as “an establishment where wild animals are kept for exhibition... to which members of the public have access to, with or without charge for admission, seven or more days in any period of 12 consecutive months”.

The application process for a zoo licence is complex and requires the licensing inspection to be carried out by an inspector who has been appointed by the Secretary of State.

First licences run for a period of four years, licences after this run for six years. The licence fee is £58.10. There is an additional fee for the inspector appointed by the Secretary of State, which is charged at cost.

To apply for a zoo licence please complete the zoo licence application form and return it by email or by post to the Food and Safety Team, South Norfolk Council, South Norfolk House, Cygnet Court, Long Stratton, Norwich, NR15 2XE, along with the relevant application fee.

An officer will contact you upon receipt of the application to organise a suitable date and time to visit your business.