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Animals and pets

Owning a pet is a rewarding experience, but it's important to know your responsibilities. Find out how to register and microchip your pet, what your responsibilities are in caring for your animal and information about our refuge services.

Register your pet

The microchipping and lifetime registration scheme helps authorities in returning lost or injured animals to their owners. Once microchipped and registered, your pet is protected for life.

Cats and dogs in NSW must be permanently identified by microchipping by the time the animal is 12 weeks old under the Companion Animals Act.

Once the animal is microchipped, these identification details are entered into the NSW Companion Animal Register. A certificate is then issued to the owner with the identification details.

Register Online

To register your pet online, please visit petregistry.nsw.gov.au. You will need to have your driver’s licence, passport or Medicare card handy to create your Pet Registry account.

A how-to guide can be found here.

Once you have your account set up, you can:

  • pay appropriate Lifetime Registration fees
  • update your address or phone number details whenever the need arises
  • transfer ownership to a new owner
  • report your pet lost/found

Register in person

To register your pet you will need:

  • Lifetime Registration R2 form
  • a certificate of microchipping or letter from your vet
  • proof of de-sexing from your vet or a statutory declaration
  • documents which entitle you to a discount (for example pension card)
  • method of payment — EFTPOS, credit card, cheque, money order or cash

You must notify Council if any of the following circumstances occur:

  • change of ownership, change of address or any other details within 14 days
  • death of animal within 28 days in writing
  • missing animal within 96 hours
  • if a court declares or revokes a dog as being dangerous within 7 days
  • if you sell or give away your animal, a change of owner/details form must be completed and sent to Council

The change of owner details form (C3A) can be found on the Division of Local Government website. Do not give the certificate to the new owner, as you are responsible for the details to be changed. Penalties apply where changes to ownership are not notified.

You do not need to re-register your animal when moving within NSW, but you are required to change your address.

Dogs:

  • Desexed dog — $66
  • Desexed dog owned by eligible pensioner — $27
  • Non-desexed dog — $224
  • Non-desexed dog owned by registered breeder — $66

Cats:

  • Desexed or non-desexed cat — $56
  • Desexed or non-desexed cat owned by an eligible pensioner— $27
  • Non-desexed cat owned by registered breeder — $56
Annual permit fees

Please use the Annual Permit Form to pay for an annual permit.

A late fee of an additional $18 is applicable if a permit is not paid for by 28 days after the permit requirement took effect.

Permit typeDescriptionPermit fee
Undesexed catCat not desexed by 4 months of age$81
Dangerous dogDog declared to be dangerous$197
Restricted dogDog declared to be a restricted breed or restricted by birth$197
Penalties

The following penalties can also be issued:

  • Animal not permanently identified (microchipped) $180
  • Animal not Lifetime Registered $330
  • Failure to notify change of address/owner $180
  • Failure to prevent dog escaping $220
  • Dog not on lead in public place $330
  • Failure to remove dog faeces $275
  • Failure to take seized animal to owner/Council/approved premises $660
  • Dog in prohibited place $330
  • Own or in charge of attacking dog $1320

Pet owner responsibilities

  • If your dog is in a public place, it must be under the effective control of a competent person by means of an adequate chain or leash. The exceptions to this are: dogs exhibited at a show or engaging in obedience or agility trials or a dog secured in a cage or in an approved off-leash area.
  • If your dog is being exercised in an approved off-leash area it must always be under effective control of a competent person.
  • You are not permitted to walk more than 4 dogs at any one time in an on-leash or an off-leash area.
  • Greyhounds that are registered are exempt from wearing a muzzle in a public place (must be on a lead like any other dog). However, a greyhound must wear a muzzle in a declared off-leash area unless it has completed an approved greyhound re-training program and either:
    • the greyhound is wearing an approved collar, or
    • the person in charge of the greyhound is in possession of a proof of completion card certifying that the greyhound has successfully completed the program.
  • If your dog defecates in a public place, it is an offence not to remove the faeces.
  • Dogs are prohibited in children's play areas, food preparation/consumption areas, recreation areas, public bathing areas, school grounds, child care centres, shopping areas and wildlife protection areas.

Dangerous or noisy animals

Nearly all dogs will bark for various reasons and this alone does not make the noise unreasonable or offensive. The noise needs to be at such a level and frequency as to have a detrimental effect on your normal daily activities.

Excessive dog barking can be caused by many things. Some of the most practical and common ways to reduce dogs barking may include:

  • reducing the number of dogs kept on the premises according to your specific circumstances
  • restricting dogs visibility to the outside of the property, such as solid or opaque fences
  • increasing the dog's exercise regime
  • undertaking dog training
  • toys, bones and other devices to entertain dogs during waking hours
  • citronella or similar collars can help train the dog when you are not around to do the training
  • some dogs may have anxiety that can only be controlled with prescribed medication.

Often there is no single solution to controlling your dog's barking — it may take a combination of measures to get it to an acceptable level. In some cases, you may need to seek professional help from your local vet or a dog behaviour specialist.

The noise control page outlines what you need to do in order to make a complaint about a noisy animal.