Thursday 19th September 2019
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If you wish to operate a dog breeding establishment, you must first obtain a licence from the local authority. Please contact us using the details below.

A breeding establishment is defined as any premises where the breeding of dogs for sale is carried on.

A person will be presumed to be carrying on a business where during any 12 month period, five or more litters are born to their bitch / bitches. A decision as to whether a breeder with bitches producing fewer than five litters a year needs to be licensed will depend on whether the breeder concerned is carrying on a business: this can only be determined by the local authority on the facts of the case.

Additional conditions for dog breeders include:

  • bitches are not mated if they are less than one year old
  • bitches do not give birth to more than six litters of puppies each
  • bitches do not give birth to puppies before the end of the 12 months beginning the day on which they last gave birth
  • accurate records are kept

We are responsible for licensing establishments, shops or individuals that are involved in activities concerning animals.

There is an application fee which must be paid at the time an application is made.

The fee is subject to annual review. Licences usually run from 1 January (or when issued) until 31 December and are renewable annually.

Offences and penalties
The following offences apply to the breeding of dogs;

  • anybody found guilty of keeping a dog breeding establishment without a licence may be subject to a fine not exceeding £2,500
  • anybody found guilty of failing to comply with the conditions of their licence may be subject to a fine not exceeding £2,500
  • anybody found guilty of obstructing or delaying an Inspector or authorised veterinary surgeon or veterinary practitioner in the exercising of their powers may be fined up to a maximum of £1,000

If found guilty under this act, the defendants licence may be cancelled and they may be disqualified from keeping a dog breeding establishment for such length of time as the court thinks fit.

Refusal of licence
Licenses may be refused, cancelled or revoked for several reasons (please note that not all the restrictions are relevant to all licenses). The courts may disqualify applicants from holding an animal licence for a set period of time:

  • if the applicant is under 18.
  • if the applicant has been disqualified from holding an animal licence or keeping an animal.
  • if conditions of the licence are not met



 Contact information

Licensing service
Luton Borough Council, Town Hall, George Street, Luton, Bedfordshire, LU1 2BQ
Tel: 01582 546040

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