Pet shop - licence conditions

1.0   Licence display

1.1    This licence, or a copy of this licence, should be displayed to the public in a prominent position.

NB. For security reasons, the licence should not display the licence holder’s home address.

2.0    Accommodation

2.1    Animals must at all times be kept in accommodation and environment suitable to their species with respect to situation, size temperature, lighting, ventilation and cleanliness and not exposed to draughts.  All accommodation must be kept in good repair.

2.2    If animals are displayed outdoors, they must have protection appropriate to their species.

2.3    Housing must be constructed of non-porous materials or be appropriately treated.

2.4    In order to control the spread of disease and to prevent injury, animals must not be kept in housing in such a way that they can be disturbed by other animals or by the public.

2.5    All livestock for sale must be readily accessible and easy to inspect, with cages sited so that the floor of the cage is readily visible.

2.6   Accommodation must be cleaned as often as necessary to maintain good hygiene standards.

2.7    Where accommodation is on a tiered system, water, food or other droppings must not be allowed  to enter the lower housing.

2.8    All accessories provided in the accommodation must be suitable for the species.

NB When designing accommodation, consideration should be given to using systems which would allow removal of the animals in case of emergency.  This provision would not usually apply to aquariums and ponds.

3.0   Exercise facilities

3.1    Suitable and sufficient facilities must be available where appropriate.

NB For puppies, where required, a covered exercise area of at least 2.46 square metres (26 sq ft) should be provided.  Exercise areas should have a minimum height of 1.8 metres (6 ft) to facilitate adequate access by staff for cleaning.

4.0   Register of animals

4.1    A livestock purchase register must be maintained for all livestock.  A sales register must be maintained for:

4.1.1 puppies;

4.1.2 kittens;

4.1.3 psittacines;

4.1.4 species contained in the Schedule to the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976 (as modified)

NB. This can be by cross-reference to an invoice file.  The purpose of the register is to ascertain the source of livestock and for emergency contact of purchaser.  The name, address and telephone number of the purchaser should be obtained.

5.0   Stocking numbers and densities

5.1    The maximum numbers of animals to be stocked on the premises will be governed by the accommodation available, as stated in the stocking density lists detailed in the schedules to these licence conditions.  No animal other than those specified in the licence may be stocked without prior written approval from the licensing authority.  These stocking densities are provided for guidance and recommendation only.

See schedules below

6.0    Health, disease and acclimatisation

6.1    All stock for sale must be in good health and free from obvious parasitic infestation as far as can be reasonably determined without veterinary inspection.

6.2    Any sick or injured animal must receive appropriate care and treatment without delay.  Inexperienced staff must not treat sick animals unless under appropriately experienced supervision.

NB. “Care and treatment” may include euthanasia but under no circumstances may an animal be euthanised other than in a humane and effective manner.  In case of doubt, veterinary advice must be sought.

6.3   Facilities must be provided to isolate sick animals.

NB For ornamental fish, In-line UV treatment or other sterilising devices effectively provide a means of isolating individual tanks in multiple tank systems.  They must be of a proper size and maintained in accordance with the manufacturer’s recommendations.

6.4    All animals must receive appropriate inoculations where required for the species, as advised by the veterinary surgeon.  Veterinary advice must be sought whenever necessary.

6.5    Any animal with an obvious, significant abnormality which would materially affects its quality of life, must not be offered for sale.  When in doubt, veterinary advice should be sought.

6.6    All animals must be allowed a suitable acclimatisation period before sale.

6.7    All reasonable precautions must be taken to prevent the outbreak and spread of disease.  No animal which is suffering from, or could reasonably be suspected of having come into contact with any other animal suffering from, any infectious or contagious disease, or which is infested with parasites, shall be brought into or kept on the premises unless effectively isolated.

6.8    Individual litters of puppies and kittens must be kept separate from other litters.

6.9    All necessary precautions must be taken to prevent harborage, or the introduction to the premises of rodents, insects and other pests.

7.0    Food and drink

7.1    Animals must be supplied with adequate amounts of food and drink, appropriate to their needs and at suitable intervals.

7.2    All food must be suitable for the species concerned.

7.3    Food and drink receptacles must be constructed and positioned to minimise faecal contamination and spillage.

7.4    A suitable and sufficient number of receptacles must be provided and cleaned at regular intervals.

8.0    Food storage

8.1    All food, excluding live foods intended for feedings to livestock on the premises, must be stored in impervious closed containers.

8.2    The containers and equipment used for feeding must be kept in a clean and sound condition.

9.0   Observation

9.1    All livestock must be attended to at regular intervals, at least once daily, appropriate to the species.  It is recommended that a system of recording observation is maintained.

10.0  Excreta and soiled bedding

10.1  All excreta and soiled bedding must be kept in a hygienic manner and stored in impervious containers with close-fitting lids - away from direct sunlight.

10.2  Excreta and soiled bedding must be removed from the premises on a regular basis, at least weekly disposed of to the satisfaction of the appropriate local authority and in accordance with current regulations and good waste management practice.

10.3  All containers must be kept in a clean condition.

11.0   Transportation

11.1  When receiving stock, the licensee must make every effort to ensure that it is transported in a suitable manner.  It is advisable (recommended) to record the registration number of vehicles transporting livestock.

11.2  Any livestock received or consigned shall be transported according to the regulations laid down in current legislation, such as the Welfare of Animals (Transport) Order 1997.

NB. For air transportation, the IATA live animals regulations must be followed, as a minimum legal standard.

12.0   Transportation containers

12.1   Livestock must be transported or handed to purchasers in suitable containers.

13.0  Sale of livestock

13.1  No mammal shall be sold unweaned or, if weaned, at an age at which it should not have been weaned

13.2  In the case of non-mammals, they must be capable of feeding themselves.

14.0   Dangerous wild animals

14.1  When dangerous wild animals are kept, the cages must be of a secure construction, appropriate to the species.  A fine wire mesh, glass or plastic safety barrier must be incorporated into the cage system.

14.2  The local authority should be notified in the event that the pet shop wishes to offer for sale, for the first time, any animal on the Schedule to the Dangerous Wild Animals Act.  Although it is acknowledged that there is an exemption contained within the Act in relation to pet shops, it is recommended that considered should be given to complying with any special requirement(s) specified in the Act for the safe accommodation or care of the animal.

14.3   Licensees selling animals on the Schedule to the Dangerous Wild Animals Act should inspect the purchaser’s licence to keep such an animal and inform the issuing authority of the details of the purchase.

15.0  Pet care advice

15.1  Pet care leaflets or other similar written instructions must be made available to customers free of charge at the time of purchase, in addition to any offer to purchase pet care books or leaflets.

15.2   Purchasers must be given proper advice on the care of the animal and, where necessary, on the maintenance and use of any accessories.

15.3   Appropriate reference materials must always be available for use by staff.

NB. Further advice can be obtained from the organisations listed in Annex 1 at the back of this document.

16.0  Staff training and livestock knowledge

16.1  No animal should be stocked or sold unless the staff (or at least one member of the staff) is familiar with the care and welfare of the animals stocked and has a recognised qualification or suitable experience.

16.2  In respect of new applications (not renewals) at least one member of staff working at the licensed premises must hold the City and Guilds Pet Store Manager Certificate, or some other appropriate qualification, or must be in the course of training and obtain the qualification within two years of the licence being granted.

16.3  The licensee must formulate a written training policy for all permanent staff and will be required to demonstrate that systematic training is carried out.

NB Further advice and guidance on training can be obtained from the organisations listed in Annex 1.

17.0  Fire and other emergency precautions

17.1  Suitable emergency precautions and written procedures must exist and be made known to all staff, including arrangements for evacuation of livestock.

NB. The general maxim of “people first” is good advice.

17.2   Entrances and exits must be clear of obstructions at all times.

17.3  Suitable fire fighting equipment must be provided, maintained, regularly serviced and sited as advised by the Local Fire Protection/Prevention Officer and in consultation with the local authority.

17.4  The licensee, or a designated keyholder, must at all times be within reasonable distance of the premises and available to visit the premises in case of emergency.

NB. A reasonable distance would, in normal conditions, be interpreted as no more than 20 minutes travelling time.

17.5  A list of keyholders must be lodged with the local police and with the local authority.

17.6  In the interests of animal welfare, the following notice must be displayed at the front of the shop: “In case of an emergency, dial 999”. The number of the local police station should also be displayed.

17.7  When pet shops are sited within other premises, the licensee or keyholders must have access at all times to the premises containing the livestock.

17.8  All electrical installations and appliances must be maintained in a safe condition.

NB. It is strongly recommended that smoke and residual current detectors or similar devices are installed.


North Kesteven District Council
Kesteven Street
NG34 7EF

Tel: 01529 414155
Fax: 01529 308394
Email: Licensing Team