Pet shops

Who To Contact

Environmental Health and Consumer Protection Service
Yorkon Building
Archway Road
L36 9FB

Telephone: 0151 443 4712

Fax Number: 0151 443 5438

The keeping and running of a pet shop is controlled by the Pet Animals Act 1951.

You cannot keep a pet shop unless you have obtained a licence from the council.


The licence fee for 2019 to 2020 is £252. The licence is renewable annually.

Before we grant a licence you must be able to demonstrate the following:

  • You are suitably qualified to keep animals with regard to the type and number proposed to be kept.
  • You will keep animals in suitable accommodation and have adequate supplies of food and bedding.
  • You will not sell mammals at too early an age.
  • You will take all reasonable precautions to prevent the spread of infectious disease amongst the animals.
  • You will take appropriate steps to protect the animals in the case of fire or other emergency.
  • You will keep a register on the premises, giving a description of any animal received on the premises, the age and sex, the date of acquisition and departure and the source from which you received the animals. This should be available for inspection at all times by a licensing inspector or by a veterinary practitioner authorised by the council.
  • You will not sell animals to a child under the age of 12 years.
  • We may refuse or withhold a licence on other grounds if those grounds are such that conditions are not suitable for the keeping of animals.

How to apply

Download, complete and return the application form, enclosing the correct fee.
Each licence is subject to standard conditions that are imposed on all pet shops licensed by the council.  In addition to the standard conditions a licence may also contain special conditions that are only applicable to your premises.

If you have been refused a licence or aggrieved by conditions set out in it, you can appeal to the magistrates court.

Animal licensing changes

As you may be aware the Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) Regulations 2018 comes into force on the 1st October. Guidance for each activity has recently been released:

The Council is currently in the process of reviewing the new legislation and guidance. As a result licence conditions will be changed and our fees and procedures will also need to be adjusted. If you wish to apply for a licence please contact environmental health.  If you already have an animal license with Knowsley Council, we will contact you to let you know what the next steps are. In the meantime, you should review the above guidance to see how the changes might impact on your business.