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Boarding animals

Any person who wishes to carry out the business of providing accommodation for other people's dogs and cats must first obtain a licence from St Helens Council under the provisions of the Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963.

An applicant must not be disqualified from any of the following at the time of application:

  • Keeping an animal boarding establishment
  • Keeping a pet shop under the Pet Animals Act 1951
  • Keeping animals under the Protection of Animals (Amendment) Act 1954
  • Owning, keeping, being involved in the keeping or being entitled to control or influence the keeping of animals, dealing in animals or transportation of animals under the Animals Welfare Act 2006

Application Process

All applications must be submitted on the prescribed application form together with the annual fee of £264.81 plus veterinary fees. 

Once your application has been validated, an Environmental Health officer will contact you to arrange an inspection of the premises. On successful completion the licence will be issued. 

If you wish to make any changes to the premises licensed, or details of the licence holder change, please contact us for further advice. These licences are not transferable.

It is in the public interest that the licensing authority must process your application before it can be granted. If you have not heard from the authority within 10 working days of the application being submitted, please email Environmental Health for a progress report.

New Regulations 2018

On 1 October 2018, new regulations came into force. These regulations, known as the Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018, set out the conditions that need to be met before a licence can be issued.

DEFRA have published guidance notes which set out the conditions and how they can be met. While these notes have been provided to assist inspectors, they are also useful for business owners. All premises are risk-rated following an inspection and a star rating of 1 to 5 is awarded. Only those businesses that obtain a higher standard are awarded a 4 or 5-star rating. The star rating determines the period of the licence:

  • 1 to 2 stars: 1-year licence
  • 3 to 4 stars: 2-year licence
  • 5 stars: 3-year licence

Please contact Environmental Health for further information or if you require an application form.

For further information and to see copies of the guidance notes, visit the Canine & Feline Sector Group.

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