Domestic Animals Domestic Animals

ANIMAL MANAGEMENT (CATS AND DOGS)

The Animal Management (Cats and Dogs) Act (the Act) commenced on 1 July 2009. The Act introduced a set of state wide uniform laws providing for the identification and registration of cats and dogs, the effective management of regulated dogs, and the promotion of responsible ownership of cats and dogs.
 
While the regulated dog provisions have been in place since commencement, the Act provided a phase in period for specific local governments, including Croydon, to introduce compulsory registration and micro-chipping of cats and dogs. Council at its meeting of 24 June 2009 resolved to defer commencement of the remaining provisions of the Act to December 2010.
 
Under the Act, all owners of cats and dogs must register their pets with Council. Council is obliged to maintain a register of cats and dogs and a Regulated Dog database.
 
Working dogs are separately defined under the Act and not required to be registered. A working dog means a dog usually kept or proposed to be kept on rural land by an owner who is a primary producer, or a person engaged or employed by a primary producer primarily for the purpose of droving, protecting, tending, or working, stock, or being trained in droving, protecting, tending, or working, stock. It does not include a class of dog prescribed under a regulation.
 
From 10 December 2010, compulsory micro-chipping provisions will apply to all cats and
dogs under 12 weeks on date of commencement and all cats and dogs subject to change of ownership after the commencement date.
 
The Act provides for a 12 week period from commencement of registration provisions during which fines and penalties cannot be issued for unregistered dogs and cats.
 
An owner must register a cat or dog with the local government within 14 days of starting to keep the animal (section 44 of the Act).