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The Fauquier County (VA) Planning Commission is holding a public hearing on Thursday, March 17, on clarifying amendments to zoning regulations governing small, non-commercial kennels in the county.  The purpose is to clarify and streamline the numerous permits and licenses currently required for many hobby breeders.

Those who wish to comment may attend the public hearing or reach out to the commission at the information listed below.


Current zoning law requires a zoning permit for any breeding activity. County code further requires a dealer license for breeders who produce more than one litter.  These requirements have been creating confusion, as the county code exempts those who breed one companion animal no more than one time per calendar year.

As a result of this disconnect, some breeders who should be exempt under current county code (because they produce only one litter per year) are being asked to obtain additional permits.

Amendment Proposal:

The amendment proposed by the Zoning and Development Services department, after considering input from AKC and local hobby breeders, seeks to bring the zoning ordinance in line with existing county code requirements while also streamlining current procedures and requirements.

The amendment to the zoning code exempts from the definition of kennel “a person who breeds not more than one (1) companion animal not more than one (1) time per calendar year”.  This change would bring the zoning ordinance in line with the existing County Code requirement for obtaining a dealer license, and those who breed one litter per year would no longer require any permits.  One litter would be a by-right permitted use without the need for additional permitting or licensing.

Additionally, it adds a streamlined Administrative Permit process that would allow a breeder up to 4 litters per calendar year for a one-time $75 fee.  This would remain valid as long as you continue to operate as approved, without the need for additional zoning permits.

Breeders in the county are encouraged to view the link above for the amendment language, as well as a staff report further explaining these amendments.

AKC Government Relations thanks the zoning department staff who took significant time to talk with AKC GR and local hobby breeders and worked to make the amendments as fair and reasonable as possible while ensuring alignment with current county code.

Changes to county code regarding kennels are not under consideration at this time.

What You Can Do:

County residents who wish to comment may do so in one of the following ways:

Attend the March 17 public hearing.  The hearing information is as follows:
Thursday, March 17, 2022
6:30 pm
Warren Green Building, First Floor Meeting Room
10 Hotel Street
Warrenton, Virginia

Seating will be limited and those wishing to speak are encouraged to arrive prior to 6:30.  Speaking time is limited to three minutes per person.
Face masks are required for those not fully vaccinated for COVID-19.

The hearing will also be streamed online for those who wish to watch from home.

Contact the members of the Planning Commission prior to the March 17 hearing:

Advance written comments may be sent to:
Ms. Meredith Meixner, Planning Associate II
Fauquier County Department of Community Development
10 Hotel Street, Suite 305
Warrenton, Virginia 20186

AKC Government Relations continues to closely monitor proposals in Virginia that could impact dog owners and breeders.  For questions or more information, contact AKC GR at