Animal welfare establishment licence

Apply for an animal welfare establishment licence

What is an animal welfare establishment licence?

Any persons or organisations operating animal welfare establishments (such as animal sanctuaries or animal re homing centres) where 8 animals (excluding fish) or 5 dogs or 5 equines are kept at the same time by the operator of the Animal Welfare establishment (AWE) must be licenced.

The 8 animal threshold excludes any animal under 4 months old if it was born within the AWE or arrived at the AWE with its mother.

Persons do not meet the criteria for licensing as an Animal Welfare Establishment if the animals kept are:

  • kept as pets
  • kept at premises used for the care or treatment of animals by a person who is a veterinary surgeon
  • kept by or are in the care of a local authority
  • kept as part of farming or for use in the course of a business
  • Kept temporarily by persons licensed under the Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963
  • kept solely for military, police or sporting purposes.
  • kept for exhibition for the purposes of education or entertainment
  • dogs kept to be trained as assistance dogs


An animal welfare establishment licence is £176.87+ vet fees.

How to apply 

email Environmental Health for an application form.

What happens next?

Once we have received and processed your application we will contact you.

To make a payment contact customer services.
Phone: 0141 577 3001


Last modified on 1 April 2023