Agenda Item No 6
The Vale of Glamorgan Council
Licensing Committee: 13th May 2014
Report of the Director of Development Services
Proposed Conditions to be Attached to Animal Boarding Establishment Licences and Pet Shop Licences.
Purpose of the Report
1. To consider a review of the conditions, which are attached to all Animal Boarding Establishment Licences and Pet Shop Licences, following a six week consultation with the Trade and Licensing Committee Members'.
It is recommended that the Standard Conditions and Guidance to be attached to all Licences for Pet Shops, Boarding Catteries and Dog Boarding Kennels be approved.
Reason for the Recommendation
To adopt the revised standard conditions.
2. At present all Animal Boarding Establishment Licences are issued subject to compliance with the Vale of Glamorgan Council's "Standard Conditions for Animal Boarding Establishments". The licensing of Animal Boarding Establishments is currently governed by the Animal Boarding Establishment Act 1963 and the Animal Welfare Act 2006.
3. The Vale of Glamorgan Council's "Standard Conditions for Animal Boarding Establishments" were derived from model conditions, issued by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health in 1995. These conditions are now considered to be outdated and do not take account of matters contained within the Animal Welfare Act 2006.
4. At present all Pet Shop Licences are issued subject to compliance with the Vale of Glamorgan Council's "Standard Conditions for Pet Shops".
5. The licensing of Pet Shops is currently governed by the Pet Animals Act 1951 and the Animal Welfare Act 2006.
6. The Vale of Glamorgan Council's "Standard Conditions for Pet Shops" were derived from model standards for pet shop licence conditions, issued by the Local Government Association in 1998. These conditions are now considered to be outdated and do not take account of matters contained within the Animal Welfare Act 2006.
7. The Animal Welfare Act 2006 represented a change to animal welfare law. The aim of the Act is to consolidate and modernise legislation such as the Animal Boarding Establishment Act and the Pet Animals Act by placing a clear duty of care on those who are responsible for animals.
8. Prior to the Animal Welfare Act officers would need to have proven that as a result of individual's actions, an animal had suffered.
9. Officers now use the Animal Welfare Act alongside the parent legislation to ensure that animals do not suffer.
10. Officers achieve this by ensuring that conditions attached to such licences ensure that every animal is provided with the five freedoms, namely:
i. Freedom from hunger and thirst
ii. Freedom from discomfort
iii. Freedom from pain, injury and disease
iv. Freedom to behave normally
v. Freedom from fear and distress
11. At present, the Vale of Glamorgan Council do not differentiate by way of condition, between those premises that board Cats or Dogs or both.
12. It is proposed that separate conditions are adopted for Catteries and Kennels.
13. In 2013, The Welsh Heads of Trading Standards, the Welsh Heads of Environmental Health, and Welsh Local Government Association recommended new licence conditions to be adopted by Local Authorities in Wales.
14. The proposed conditions for Pet Shops, Animal Boarding Establishments and Dog Breeding Establishments have been adopted by 6 Welsh authorities and another 6 (including Bridgend and Cardiff) are also in the process of adopting these conditions.
15. On 4th March 2014, The Licensing Committee of the Vale of Glamorgan Council instructed the Licensing Authority to arrange a six week consultation with the Trade, and Members' of the Licensing Committee in relation to the new licence conditions.
16. The consultation documents were sent on 21st March 2014.
17. The consultation period ended at midnight on Monday 5th May 2014.
Relevant Issues and Options
18. One response has been received in relation to the consultation. This was received from Mr Martin Evans of Westra Boarding Kennels & Cattery on 14th April 2014. A copy of this response is attached at Appendix A to this Report.
19. In relation to Mr Evans comments regarding the transportation of Animals, Licensing Officers made contact with the Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency. It was confirmed that a Type 1 Authorisation is required when an animal is being transported on a journey over 65km, and under 8 hours in duration. For shorter journeys, Licence holders must ensure compliance with Article 3 and the Technical Rules of the Regulations EC 2005/1.
20. This information has now been included in the schedules attached to each set of conditions.
21. The requested Licensing Conditions and Guidance for Dog Boarding Kennels are shown at Appendix B to this Report.
22. The requested Licensing Conditions and Guidance for Boarding Catteries are shown at Appendix C to this Report.
23. The requested Licensing Conditions and Guidance for Pet Shops are shown at Appendix D to this Report.
24. The proposed conditions for Dog Boarding Kennels, Boarding Catteries and Pet Shops are intended to set a minimum standard, to be met by all licensed premises. S1(3) of the Animal Boarding Act and s1(3) of the Pet Animals Act 1951, permit local authorities to add further conditions, known as specific conditions, to individual licences, in order to ensure that the requirements of the Acts are met. Such conditions may be added following an inspection of the premises, and the Local Authority may put a time limit on the implementation of conditions, depending on the severity of the matter.
25. The period of the Licence is outlined under section 1(5) of the Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963, which states:-
26. Any such licence shall (according to the applicant’s requirements) relate to the year in which it is granted or to the next following year. In the former case, the licence shall come into force at the beginning of the day on which it is granted, and in the latter case it shall come into force at the beginning of the next following year.
27. Should Members be minded to approve the new conditions, they will come into force immediately in relation to any Grants of Pet Shop, Boarding Cattery or Dog Boarding Kennel Licences.
28. In relation to current licensed Premises, should Members be minded to approve the new conditions, they will come into force on 1st January 2015, following the renewal of their current Licence.
29. Following consultation with current holders of Animal Boarding Establishment Licences and Pet Shop Licences, and the adoption of the proposed conditions it will be proposed that grandfather rights will apply for current Licence holders, where it is deemed suitable; for example at Animal Boarding Establishments where the current construction of the kennels or chalets do not meet the new requirements, provided that the structure is impervious and can be cleaned to a satisfactory standard, in order to prevent the spread of infectious or contagious disease. Any new builds at the establishment(s) will be required to meet the proposed conditions.
30. It will also be proposed that the grandfather rights will remain unless the named Licence holder/s change or the Licence is allowed to lapse.
Resource Implications (Financial and Employment)
31. All resources directed to the administration and enforcement of the Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963 and Pet Animals Act 1951 are recovered through the corresponding fees and charges for those Licences.
32. Licensing Committee approved the Licence fees associated with Animal Boarding Establishments and Pet Shops on 5th March 2013. The current fee for an Animal Boarding Establishment Licence or a Pet Shop Licence is £222.
33. Any veterinary costs incurred for the duration of an Animal Boarding Establishment Licence or a Pet Shop Licence, are payable by the Licence Holder.
Sustainability and Climate Change Implications
34. There are no implications as a result of this report.
Legal Implications (to Include Human Rights Implications)
35. Under section 1 of the Animal Boarding Establishments Act 1963, in determining whether to grant a licence for the keeping of a pet shop by any person at any premises, a local authority shall in particular (but without prejudice to their discretion to withhold a licence on other grounds) have regard to the need for securing:
(a) that animals will at all times be kept in accommodation suitable as respects construction, size of quarters, number of occupants, exercising facilities, temperature, lighting, ventilation and cleanliness;
(b) that animals will be adequately supplied with suitable food, drink and bedding material, adequately exercised, and (so far as necessary) visited at suitable intervals;
(c) that all reasonable precautions will be taken to prevent and control the spread among animals of infectious or contagious diseases, including the provision of adequate isolation facilities;
(d) that appropriate steps will be taken for the protection of the animals in case of fire or other emergency;
(e) that a register be kept containing a description of any animals received into the establishment, date of arrival and departure, and the name and address of the owner, such register to be available for inspection at all times by an officer of the local authority, veterinary surgeon or veterinary practitioner authorised under section 2(1) of this Act
and shall specify such conditions in the licence, if granted by them, as appear to the local authority necessary or expedient in the particular case for securing all the objects specified in paragraphs (a) to (e) of this subsection.
36. Under section 1 of the Pet Animals Act 1951, in determining whether to grant a licence for the keeping of a pet shop by any person at any premises, a local authority shall in particular (but without prejudice to their discretion to withhold a licence on other grounds) have regard to the need for securing:
(a) that animals will at all times be kept in accommodation suitable as respects size, temperature, lighting, ventilation and cleanliness;
(b) that animals will be adequately supplied with suitable food and drink and (so far as necessary) visited at suitable intervals;
(c) that animals, being mammals, will not be sold at too early an age;
(d) that all reasonable precautions will be taken to prevent the spread among animals of infectious diseases;
(e) that appropriate steps will be taken in case of fire or other emergency; and shall specify such conditions in the licence, if granted by them, as appear to the local authority necessary or expedient in the particular case for securing all or any of the objects specified in paragraphs (a) to (e) of this subsection.
Crime and Disorder Implications
37. Under Section 17 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 the Council has a statutory duty to consider crime and disorder implications whilst regulating licensing activities. We must have due regard to the likely effect of the exercise of those functions and the need to do all we can reasonably do to prevent crime and disorder in our area.
Equal Opportunities Implications (to include Welsh Language issues)
38. The Council is obliged to apply its licensing conditions on an equitable basis in the case of all applications.
39. To protect the health and safety of the community by ensuring businesses meet legislative requirements, controlling infectious diseases, encouraging responsible companion animal ownership, controlling pests and regulating animal health and welfare. To maintain a fair and equitable trading environment.
Policy Framework and Budget
40. This is a matter for Licensing Committee decision.
Consultation (including Ward Member Consultation)
41. This report is not ward specific.
42. All existing licence holders have been consulted on these proposed conditions.
Relevant Scrutiny Committee
43. Housing and Public Protection.
Amanda Ewington, Licensing Officer 01446 709105
Richard Price Legal Officer