Boarding for cats or dogs allowed (England)



Contact your town hall to apply for a license if you are providing or organizing a cat or dog boarding in England. You need this license to run a:

  • boarding or cattery
  • dog sitting company
  • home dog boarding business
  • company that organizes boarding for cats or dogs of other people

You should always apply for a license if you run a business, even if you only care for a small number of animals in your own home.

The permit is valid for 1, 2 or 3 years. The council will decide the cost and duration of your permit.

Terms & Conditions

The council will inspect your premises before giving you a license. They can perform additional inspections at any time after its grant.

You must prove that you can meet the conditions of the permit. This involves in particular showing that animals are:

  • kept in suitable accommodation
  • adequate food, drink and bedding
  • visited and exercised regularly
  • protected from pain, suffering, injury and disease
  • protected in an emergency, such as a fire
  • taken care of by people trained to take care of animals

You will also need to:

  • keep all records ready for inspection, for example a boarding animal register, such as arrival and departure dates
  • display the license number in any advertisement
  • display the license clearly on the premises


You will not be granted a permit if you have committed an animal welfare offense or have been prohibited from:

  • horse rental
  • sell pets
  • boarding for cats or dogs
  • breeding dogs
  • keep or train animals for the show

Fines and penalties

You can be fined an unlimited amount or imprisoned for up to 6 months if you provide or organize boarding for cats or dogs without a license or if you do not comply with the conditions of your license.

Your license may be withdrawn if you stop or delay an inspection, and you may be prohibited from operating a boarding house.

Posted on November 4, 2020


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