East Northants Council has welcomed new legislation which overhauls current animal licensing laws.
The changes, which came into effect on October 1, impact how residents and local businesses buy and sell pets, use day care or animal boarding services and keep and train animals for exhibitions.
Anyone selling pets, and dog breeders operating as a business or breeding more than three litters a year needs to apply for a licence from the council.
Adverts selling pets must now include the licence number, name of local authority issuing the licence, photograph and age of pet, and county of origin and residence of pet.
For anyone looking to buy a pet, it is important that you look out for these things to make sure that the person selling is doing so legitimately to ensure animal welfare.
The change in legislation requires anyone offering day care or home-boarding to apply for a licence from the council.
Before using these services, residents are asked to be mindful and make sure that anyone providing these services holds the correct licence.
Leader of East Northamptonshire Council, Cllr Steven North, said: “The changes in animal licensing laws will help to further protect animal welfare, and ensure that anyone selling and breeding pets or offering home-boarding services is responsible when caring for animals.
“I would urge anyone who is unsure about how these changes might affect them to contact our licensing team, who will be more than happy to offer guidance and advice.”
If you previously registered a performing animal with Northamptonshire County Council’s Trading Standards this registration will expire on March 31, 2019, and you will need to apply for a licence from East Northamptonshire Council under the new requirements.
A new star rating has been rolled out for all animal activity licences, with ratings ranging from one to five, five being the maximum that can be achieved.
This rating will be displayed on the licence.
To check whether a business holds the correct licence, or to apply for a licence, visit www.northantslicensing.gov.uk.
People can also contact the licensing team by writing to Central Licensing Administration Unit, East Northamptonshire Council, Cedar Drive, Thrapston, Northamptonshire, NN14 4LZ, calling 01832 742102 or emailing email@example.com.