The information is provided as guidance only and is not intended to be either a comprehensive or exhaustive explanation of the requirements and obligations under the relevant pieces of legislation. If you have any queries please contact us. Alternatively, you may also wish to consider other sources of assistance, such as independent legal advice.

A person who wishes to carry on the business of selling animals (or keeping animals with the intention of selling them), as pets at any premises, including a private dwelling, in Mid Devon must obtain a licence from the Licensing Team.

You will not need a pet shop licence if you keep or sell 'pedigree animals' which are bred by you or are the offspring of an animal you keep as a pet.

'Pedigree animals' means an animal of any description which is, by its breeding, eligible for registration with a recognised club or society that keeps a register of animals of that description.

Applicants must not have been disqualified from keeping a pet shop. Some of these disqualifications occur under the following Acts:

  •  The Pet Animals Act 1951
  •  The Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963
  •  The Protection of Animals (Amendment ) Act 1954
  •  The Protection of Animals (Cruelty to Dogs) (Scotland) Act 1934

Also, the Licensing Authority will assess the suitability of the applicant as well as the premises. To ensure there is sufficient knowledge and expertise the applicant must have or be in the course of taking the City and Guilds Pet Shop Management Certificate (or a similar qualification).

To apply for a pet shop licence applicants must complete and submit an application form and provide the appropriate fee. The form can be completed hard copy or online.

On receipt of a new application we will instruct a Veterinary surgeon to inspect the premises. The applicant is recharged the vet inspection fee. The vet will consider (amongst other things) the following points:

  • that animals will at all times be kept in accommodation suitable as respects size, temperature, lighting, ventilation and cleanliness
  • that animals will be adequately supplied with suitable food and drink and (so far as necessary) visited at suitable intervals
  • that animals, being mammals, will not be sold at too early an age
  • that all reasonable precautions will be taken to prevent the spread among animals of infectious diseases
  • that appropriate steps will be taken in case of fire or other emergency

The licence expires on 31 December in the year that the application is made or, if requested by the applicant the licence may take effect from the start of the following year and expire at the end of that year. A licence holder must ensure that the licence is renewed by 1 January annually if they wish to continue running the establishment.

Any premises with a licence must follow and comply with the model conditions which can be viewed on our website. Additional conditions may also be added to the licence if it is felt necessary.

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