The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018

A dog day care licence is required for businesses which provide day care facilities for dogs which are not located on a domestic premises. Overnight stays of dogs are not permitted for this licence type.

If a dog day care is operating inside a domestic house, then a home boarding licence is required.

DEFRA have set specific conditions for Dog Day Care which need to be followed. This also includes details of what records you need to keep.



You will need to provide us with information about the business such as your operating procedures outlining how you meet and comply with each of the conditions of the licence.

The following documents should be attached to your application:

  • Preventative Healthcare Plan/ Biosecurity Risk Assessment (checked and signed off by your registered veterinarian).
  • Staff Training Policy
  • Cleaning and Hygiene procedure
  • Immature Animals Opportunities procedure
  • Separating/ Grouping of Animals policy
  • Feeding procedure
  • Disease Control and Prevention procedure
  • Cleaning procedure
  • Transport procedure- how often dogs are transported, what they are transported in, monitoring of dogs in transport, temperature control of transport, records kept in relation to transport and cleaning of vehicles.
  • Monitoring and Ensuring Health and Welfare of Animals Procedure (covering monitoring of dogs including frequency, what is observed and where it is recorded)
  • Isolation Procedure
  • Death and Escape of Animals Procedure
  • Written Emergency Plan covering fire (evacuation, firefighting equipment, how animals are evacuated and kept safe during the emergency, smoke & CO detector locations/ testing & fire drills), loss of utilities, extremes of weather/ temperature, breakdown of vehicle during animal transport, alternative accommodation provision in the event of premises becoming uninhabitable.
  • Repair and Maintenance procedure/ programme
  • Site plan of premises
  • Plan of animal accommodation for each enclosure/ indoor area with dimensions
  • Public Liability Insurance Certificate for at least £5 million cover (not to be confused with employers’ liability which is different)
  • List of staff qualifications
  • Staff training records for each member of staff (including volunteers)
  • Enrichment Procedure/ Plan for the dogs
  • Dogs Under 12 Months of Age procedure
  • Difficult Dogs procedure.

Once you have submitted your application, we will check the details and supporting documents to make sure we have everything we need. We’ll contact you if we require additional information.

We aim to determine all applications within 10 weeks of receiving a complete application.


Considerations before applying

Running a business from a premises may require planning permission. You should check with East Devon District Council’s Planning Team before making your application or carrying out any structural work to the premises.

If you live in rented accommodation, check the terms of your tenancy agreement, and obtain consent from the landlord before you apply. Most rental properties do not allow businesses to be operated from the premises. If you are granted permission by your landlord, make sure you obtain the permission in writing as the Animal Licensing Officer may ask to see this.

To avoid any unnecessary delays in getting a licence, check that the proposed animal accommodation will be compliant with the size and materials in the DEFRA guidance. If you are unsure, please contact us to ask for advice.


Licence applications

If you intend to operate a dog day care business then you will need to apply for a licence. You will need to complete a Dog Day Care Licence application. 


Licence renewals

If you hold a dog day care licence this will need to be renewed before the expiry date every year.  Please make sure you have applied to renew your licence at least 3 months before it expires to give us time to arrange the inspection. You will need to apply for a Dog Day Care Licence Renewal application. 



  • You will need to pay a fee for your licence. Please make sure you are aware of how much this will cost
  • You will need a credit or debit card to pay by phone
  • You will need to provide details of your current insurance for the business

Any personal information which you provide will be held and used by East Devon District Council for the purpose of issuing you with a licence for dog day care and on the basis of public task.


Who will receive or see my personal information?

Your information may also be shared within East Devon District Council for the purposes of carrying out our lawful functions. Otherwise your personal information will not be disclosed to anybody outside East Devon District Council without your permission, unless there is a lawful reason to do so, for example disclosure is necessary for crime prevention or detection purposes. Your information will be held securely and will not be retained for any longer than is necessary. There are a number of rights available to you in relation to our use of your personal information, depending on the reason for processing. Further detail about our use of your personal information can be found in the relevant Privacy Notice.

Consumer complaints

We would always advise that in the event of a quality or service complaint you write to the trader first.  If that is not successful, you could contact Consumer Direct who will give you advice. 

Public register

Animal License activities and Establishments