The annual inspection for those selling livestock within shops is imminent.\r\n\r\nPet retailers are being advised by The Pet Industry Federation (PIF) about the importance of joining PIF\u2019s Primary Authority scheme \u2013 the government-backed scheme which helps to standardise inspections, overcome problems encountered by retailers and raise animal welfare standards.\r\n\r\nPIF has partnered with the animal licensing experts at the City of London Corporation for its Primary Authority scheme, which supports retail members across England and Wales.\r\n\r\nRetail members of PIF can opt in to participate in the scheme at no further cost to themselves or their business.\r\n\r\nNigel Baker, chief executive said: "At this time of year, local authorities are busy renewing pet shop licences, so it\u2019s the perfect opportunity for pet retailers to opt-in to our Primary Authority scheme.\r\n\r\n"Primary Authority is there to help members. Recent research showed that less than half of local authorities are using the latest model conditions to inspect premises.\r\n\r\n"By signing to PIF\u2019s Primary Authority, retailers can be assured that the most up to date model conditions are used (so protecting animal welfare). If you believe the conditions have been incorrectly applied, you can get help.\r\n\r\n"Primary Authority is simple to implement. Members opt-in to be inspected against PIF\u2019s agreed inspection plan, which is based on the Model Licence Conditions for Pet Vending 2013, published by the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health.\r\n\r\n"If members within the scheme have any difficulties with their licence, they can phone PIF for support, and, if the inspection plan is not being followed or is being interpreted wrongly, we will liaise with the City of London Corporation to offer Assured Primary Authority Advice, which the local authority cannot ignore."\r\n\r\nHe continued: "The scheme is really simple for PIF members. Just let us know if you\u2019d like to opt-in and we will send you the information you need to get signed up. If you\u2019re not a member, speak to us today about joining and taking advantage of Primary Authority. 550 pet retailers have already signed to the scheme and PIF has already successfully responded to several questions arising from inspections."\r\n\r\nThe Primary Authority scheme is open to any current pet retail member of the Pet Industry Federation and does not incur any additional fees from PIF or the Local Authority responsible for the licence.\r\n\r\nFurther details are available at www.petfederation.co.uk.