Skip to content
Glasgow City Council

Animal Welfare Establishment Licence

Who should apply?

Under The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (Scotland) Regulations 2021, any persons or organisations operating animal welfare establishments (such as animal sanctuaries or animal rehoming 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 must be licenced. The 8 animal threshold excludes any animal under 4 months old if it was born within the animal welfare establishment, or arrived at the animal welfare establishment with its mother.

Please note that you do not meet the criteria for licensing an Animal Welfare Establishment if the animals you keep are kept:

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

How do I apply?

Please complete the application form on the licensing webpage. This should be completed and emailed to Once this has been done, the licensing section will advise you of the bank account details to which the application fee must be paid. Please note your application will not be considered under the application fee has been paid.

The licence may be granted for a period of up to three years.

Is there any Guidance?

Yes. The Scottish Government produced guidance - The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (Scotland) Regulations 2021: guidance for animal welfare establishments

The guidance notes should be read before applying for a licence.

Will there be conditions attached to the licence?

Yes. Under the 2021 Regulations there are general conditions and specific conditions that will be attached.  The general conditions are within schedule 2 of the 2021 Regulations and the specific conditions are within schedule 5 of the 2021 Regulations. Both can be viewed below. The licensing section can also add additional conditions where necessary.

General Conditions

Specific Conditions

How much will it cost?

The fee is £188. Any veterinary inspection fees are in addition to the above fee.

Share this page:

A to Z:

Council Services