Environmental Health Licences

Dog Breeding

Licence Summary

No person may keep a dog breeding establishment without first obtaining a licence from us.

A dog breeder is someone who is in the business of breeding and selling dogs, regardless of the number of litters produced in a 12 month period.

In addition, anyone producing 5 or more litters in a 12 month period should also be licensed, regardless of whether they are in the business of breeding and selling dogs.


An application fee should be paid at the time of your application and you will also be required to pay all veterinary inspection fees before the licence is issued. You will need to comply with any conditions attached to the licence once issued. Licences must be renewed annually if the premises are to continue as a dog breeding establishment.

Eligibility Criteria

A licence may be issued if the applicant is not disqualified under any of the following Acts.

  • The Breeding of Dogs Act 1973
  • The Pet Animals Act 1951
  • The Protection of Animals (Amendment) Act 1954
  • The Protection of Animals (Cruelty to Dogs)(Scotland) Act 1934

Model Licence Conditions and Guidance

The local authorities in the Northants Licensing Partnership have all adopted the CIEH Model Licence Conditions and Guidance for Dog Breeding Establishments.

Applicants should familiarise themselves with these model conditions as establishments requiring a licence will be expected to be compliant with all relevant conditions, these will be subject to local specifications as determined by your local authority inspector.

Regulation Summary

A summary of the eligibility criteria for this licence

Application Evaluation Process

Before being granted a licence the applicant must be able to demonstrate to the Council's Licensing Inspector:

  • That the dogs will at all times be kept in accommodation that is suitable in respect of construction, size of quarters, number of occupants, exercising facilities, temperature, lighting, ventilation and cleanliness.
  • That the dogs will be adequately supplied with suitable food, drink and bedding material, and (so far as is necessary) visited at suitable intervals.
  • That all reasonable precautions will be taken to prevent and control the spread amongst the dogs of infectious or contagious diseases, including the provision of isolation facilities.
  • That appropriate steps will be taken for the protection of the dogs in case of fire or other emergency, including the provision of suitable and sufficient fire fighting equipment.
  • That all appropriate steps will be taken to ensure that the dogs will be provided with suitable food, drink and bedding material and adequately exercised when being transported to or from the breeding establishment.

Does tacit consent apply if I do not hear anything after 28 days?

No. It is in the public interest that we must process your application before it can be granted. If you have not heard from us within a reasonable period, please contact us.

Apply by post

Dog Breeding Establishment - Licence/Renewal

Failed Application Redress

Please contact us in the first instance.

An applicant whose application is refused can appeal to the local magistrates' court. Please see address below:

Northamptonshire Magistrates Court
Regents Pavilion
Summerhouse Road
Moulton Park

Tel:01604 497000

Consumer Complaint

If you are not satisfied with the service we would always recommend that you should complain to the person who first dealt with the matter. If you are not satisfied with the response you receive at this stage you should then complain to the Head of Environmental Services giving details of your complaint.

You can then take the complaint a step further by writing to the Executive Director who will arrange for it to be investigated. You should receive a reply within 10 days, but if the matter is complex, or other organisations need to be contacted, it may take longer. But we will still let you know what action is being taken. You should give all the details of your complaint and say what you have done to try to get it put right. If you are still not happy after using our own complaints procedure you can complain to the Local government Ombudsman. A free booklet is available from all council offices.

Trade Associations

The Kennel Club

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