We offer a range of pre-application advice and support for animal activity licences.

A licence is required under the Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018 for:

Before you apply

Please note that certain people are disqualified from making an application. 
You should read through the relevant animal activity section using the links above. Each page will allow you to check if your business requires a licence, show the the general and specific conditions you would need to comply with, and link to the Defra guidance documents to explain the licensing process and the animal activities star rating scheme

Licence fee

The animal activites licence fee is split into two seperate parts, both of which are non-refundable: 

  1. The application fee which is paid when you submit an application. This fee covers the costs associated with determining the application to the point that it is ready to issue.
  2. The issue fee which is paid after your inspection. This fee covers the cost of issuing the licence and the follow up inspection. 

The amount you pay will depend on if you are applying for one animal activitymultiple animal activities or to be a franchise or arranger. In some circumstances, you may need to pay additional fees.


Certain people are not allowed to apply for an animal activities licence as stated in schedule 8 of the legislation:

  • A person who has at any time held a licence which was revoked under:
    • regulation 15 of these Regulations
    • regulation 17 of the Animal Welfare (Breeding of Dogs) (Wales) Regulations 2014
    • regulation 12 of the Welfare of Racing Greyhounds Regulations 2010
    • regulation 13 of the Welfare of Wild Animals in Travelling Circuses (England) Regulations 2012
  • A person who is disqualified under:
    • section 34 of the Act
    • section 40(1) and (2) of the Animal Health and Welfare (Scotland) Act 2006
    • section 4(1) of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991
    • section 33 of the Welfare of Animals Act (Northern Ireland) 2011.
    • article 33A of the Dogs (Northern Ireland) Order 1983
    • section 6(2) of the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976 from keeping a dangerous wild animal
    • section 3(3) of the Breeding of Dogs Act 1973 from keeping a breeding establishment for dogs
    • section 4(3) of the Riding Establishments Act 1964 from keeping a riding establishment
    • section 3(3) of the Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963 from keeping a boarding establishment for animals
    • section 5(3) of the Pet Animals Act 1951from keeping a pet shop
    • section 1(1) of the Protection of Animals (Amendment) Act 1954 from having custody of an animal
    • section 4(2) of the Performing Animals (Regulation) Act 1925
    • section 3 of the Protection of Animals Act 1911 from the ownership of an animal