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Local Authorities are required by law to issue licences for specific animal-related activities, with the aim of ensuring high standards of animal welfare. To help achieve this there is a requirement for licensing systems for pet shops.

The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (Wales) Regulations were debated and approved in the Senedd on the 23 March 2021 and will come in to force on the 10 September 2021.

To support these regulations, statutory guidance has been developed for Local Authorities to assist them with the licencing regime and pet sales aspect.
We would welcome your views and comments on the attached Guidance.

How to respond

Please respond using the questionnaire at the back of this document. Responses can be submitted electronically or through the post. Alternatively, an online form is available on the Welsh Government website at:

Further information and related documents

Large print, Braille and alternative language versions of this document are available on request.

Contact details

For further information:
Animal Welfare & Framework Branch
Welsh Government Cathays Park
CF10 3NQ

This document is also available in Welsh

General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)

The Welsh Government will be data controller for any personal data you provide as part of your response to the consultation. Welsh Ministers have statutory powers they will rely on to process this personal data which will enable them to make informed decisions about how they exercise their public functions. Any response you send us will be seen in full by Welsh Government staff dealing with the issues which this consultation is about or planning future consultations. Where the Welsh Government undertakes further analysis of consultation responses then this work may be commissioned to be carried out by an accredited third party (e.g. a research organisation or a consultancy company). Any such work will only be undertaken under contract. Welsh Government’s standard terms and conditions for such contracts set out strict requirements for the processing and safekeeping of personal data.

In order to show that the consultation was carried out properly, the Welsh Government intends to publish a summary of the responses to this document.

We may also publish responses in full. Normally, the name and address (or part of the address) of the person or organisation who sent the response are published with the response. If you do not want your name or address published, please tell us this in writing when you send your response. We will then redact them before publishing.

You should also be aware of our responsibilities under Freedom of Information legislation.

If your details are published as part of the consultation response then these published reports will be retained indefinitely. Any of your data held otherwise by Welsh Government will be kept for no more than three years.

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Under the data protection legislation, you have the right:

  • to be informed of the personal data held about you and to access it
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  • to (in certain circumstances) data portability
  • to lodge a complaint with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) who is our independent regulator for data protection.

For further details about the information the Welsh Government holds and its use, or if you want to exercise your rights under the GDPR, please see contact details below:

Data Protection Officer:
Welsh Government
Cathays Park
CF10 3NQ

The contact details for the Information Commissioner’s Office are:
Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Tel: 01625 545 745 or 0303 123 1113


These regulations alongside the statutory guidance have replaced Section 1 of the Pet Animals Act 1951 and will assist local authorities in granting licences subject to compliance with a set of standards. They will enable local authorities to inspect the premises, allow an appeals process to the courts in case of refusal or onerous conditions, provide that operating without a licence is an offence, and set out a number of disqualifications that are relevant to the local authority when assessing licence applications (such as a conviction for animal cruelty). They also permit a local authority to recover the costs for inspection, processing, and enforcement expenditure through a licence fee.

The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Animal Activities) (Wales) Regulations 2021 were debated and passed in the Senedd on the 23 March 2021 and come in to force on 10 September 2021.


We would like to know if you think the current draft provides enough information for Local Authority Officers when assessing applications and carrying out inspections, and for license holders in order to meet the required standards.

A crucial change to the previous license conditions of the Pet Animal Act 1951 is the prohibition of third party sales of puppies and kittens.

Your views and comments on the document are invited, particularly through your responses to the questions below, with any supporting evidence if available.


1. Do you think, as drafted, the business test provides enough advice to Local Authority officials? If not, do you have any alternative suggested wording?

2. Do you think, as drafted, the definition of a Rehoming Centre (Pet Sales guidance document, page 9) will ensure these premises will be able to continue rehoming puppies and kittens which have not been bred on the premises? If not, do you have any alternative suggested wording?

3. Do you think the species specific conditions in the guidelines are sufficiently comprehensive to ensure the welfare of these animals?

4. Do you have any further comments or suggested amendments?

Further information

Number: WG43188