Pet shop licence

You will need a licence in order to run a business selling animals as pets. This includes internet businesses. This is to ensure that animal welfare standards and health and safety regulations are met. For an initial application, a vet will make an inspection. The fees for this inspection will be recharged to the applicant. At least one member of staff needs to have relevant training and experience with the relevant animals.

There will need to be a designated key holder living within a reasonable distance of where the animals are kept in case of emergency. Key holders will need to be registered with the local police and fire service.


A pet shop licence from Forest Heath District Council and St Edmundsbury Borough Council are £195.


You will need a licence from the licensing authority that your business is in. This is usually the local council. If you do not know who that is, visit: Gov.UK, find your local council and type in the postcode of where your business is located.

In West Suffolk there are two licensing authorities, Forest Heath District Council and St Edmundsbury Borough Council.

Application form for a licence to keep a pet shop

There are certain conditions that need to be met if a licence is to be issued.

Standard Conditions for Licensed Animal Boarding, Dog Breeding and Pet Shop Establishments

How long is my licence valid for?

A licence is valid from 1 January to 31 December (calendar year). There is no reduction in cost for licences issued part way through the year.

Does tacit authorisation apply?

Yes, decision should be reached within 42 days.