The Animal Activities Licensing Regulations 2018 require all dog sitters who meet the following criteria hold a valid Dog Boarding and Dog Day Care licence to operate:
- The dog sitter operates in England
- The dog sitter offers either overnight boarding or day care services in their home.
- The dog sitter is running a business or operating on a commercial basis.
It is the responsibility of the Local Authority to determine which sitters are operating on a commercial basis. The guidance released by DEFRA says: “The Government announced in Budget 2016 a new allowance of £1,000 for trading income from April 2017. Anyone falling under this threshold would not need to be considered in the context of determining whether they are a business.”
The new legislation doesn’t require you to hold a licence to offer dog walking services.
Please note: all sitters registered with DogBuddy are deemed to be self employed, and as such they are responsible for complying with the regulations of their local council. As the process of issuing such licenses varies considerably depending on location, we always advise our sitters to contact their local council directly if they want to board dogs at their home, to discuss this further.
If you are thinking about becoming a professional dog sitter, please take a moment to familiarise yourself with the requirements of your local council and the costs of the license.