Dogs & Cats

Council works with pet owners and the community to ensure responsible pet ownership practices and compliance with legislative requirements.

Dog & Cat Ownership

New laws for cat and dog owners and breeders have been introduced in South Australia including:

  • The compulsory desexing of all dogs and cats born after 1 July 2018
  • Compulsory microchipping of all dogs and cats irrespective of their date of birth.

Dogs and Cats Online has now become the central online service all dog and cat management services, including registration payments*, contact details, microchipping and breeder registration.

For a handy overview of the changes that may affect you, download the Reforms Factsheet.

The City of Unley has also developed the Animal Management Plan 2016-20. This plan is a requirement of the Dog and Cat Management Act 1995 and its purpose is to guide the City of Unley's management of dogs and cats from 2016-2020.

*Cats do not need to be registered in the Unley Council area however microchipping details will need to be recorded in Dogs and Cats Online.

Responsible Dog Ownership

Dogs are wonderful companions and many are great family pets - but owning a dog brings with it responsibilities.
  • Dog Training

    Positive Dog Training run classes at Page Park in Clarence Park and on the Village Green in Unley.

    For information, session times and to determine the most suitable training method for your dog, please visit Positive Dog Training or phone the trainer on 0418 886 698.

  • Prescribed Breeds

    Under the Dog and Cat Management Act 1995 special conditions apply to owing the following dogs:

    • American Pit Bull Terrier
    • Fila Braziliero
    • Japanese Tosa
    • Dogo Argentina
    • Presa Canario.

    Under these conditions the dog must:
     
    • Be desexed
    • Be muzzled
    • Be on a lead of no longer than 2m in length when in a public place.

    Any offences accredited to these breeds attract higher penalties than for other dogs.
  • Prescribed Limits
    The prescribed number of dogs per premise is two.

    Under By-Law No 5 Dogs (Part 2 Limits on Dog Numbers), keeping more than the prescribed number of dogs requires our approval.

    To keep more than the prescribed number of dogs, a permit is required.
  • Application to keep more than the prescribed number of dogs

    If you wish to keep more than the prescribed number of dogs, you must apply for a permit.

    Permit applications are subject to a fee as determined by Council's Fees and Charges Schedule.

    On receipt of an application the Council's General Inspector's may undertake an inspection of the subject premises. The purpose of the inspection is to educate the applicant about responsible dog ownership and to determine the suitability of the premises to keep more than the prescribed number of dogs.

    Council may also make contact with adjoining neighbours to ascertain their position on the matter.

    All approvals are subject to conditions including:

    • Housing and exercise areas must be provided appropriate to the size and breed of the dogs.
    • The dogs are kept for family enjoyment as part of the domestic activity (dogs kept as a business require Development Approval).
    • Owners undertake to reduce the number of dogs over time to the prescribed limit.
    • The property at which the dogs are kept is to be maintained in a sanitary condition at all times.
    • The dogs must not become a nuisance to other residents or the general public.
    • Registration of the dogs must be maintained at all times.
    • That the City of Unley be notified within 14 days if the permit holder or dog(s) move.

    Where a permit holder or dog(s) move premises an application to vary the permit is required. Permit Variation Applications are subject to a fee as determined by Council's Fees & Charges Schedule.

    We may at any time vary or revoke this permit in accordance with By-Law 1 - Permits and Penalties.
     
  • Picking up After Your Dog

    Dog faeces are a serious litter issue with wide ranging impacts on amenity, health and the environment. Dog faeces carry harmful bacteria and nutrients. When waste makes its way via stormwater drains into creeks, rivers and beaches, it can create unsafe pollution.

    By cleaning up after your dog and using a leash when out walking, you can assist in preserving public open space privileges for both owners and their dogs.

    Most City of Unley parks have dispenser bags available for your use. Please note these bags are not compostable so dispose of them in the provided litter bins, or in your general waste bin at home.

    Compostable dog bags and holders are available for purchase from Council. Compostable dog bags can be disposed of in your green organics bin.

    Under the City of Unley By-law 5, no person is to allow a dog under that person’s control, charge or authority to be in a public place or on local government land unless that person has in their possession a bag or other suitable container for collection and lawful disposal of any faeces that the dog may deposit for the purpose of complying with their obligation under section 45A(6) of the Dog and Cat Management Act 1995.

Dog Registrations

Dog registration is mandatory in South Australia. If you obtain a dog older than three months of age, then you have 14 days in which to register the dog. It doesn’t matter at what time of year your first registration is done.

The registered owner of a dog must be over 16 years of age.

Dogs and Cats Online is a one-stop online service for all registration payments, microchipping and breeder information. It has replaced 68 individual Council dog registers and serves as a single online database that is accessible 24/7 for registration, microchipping and breeder information.

All registered dogs have been transferred from our system to Dogs and Cats Online.
  • Renewing Dog Registration
    You will receive your dog registration renewal by your preferred method of delivery, either email, SMS or post, with your renewal code. The renewal code needs to be entered into Dogs and Cats Online
     
    Once you check your details are correct and enter in any concession, information for the dog registration and the fee will be automatically calculated. You may then proceed to pay your dog registration.

    If you have not received your registration renewal notice by 15 July 2019 please contact Council on 8372 5111 or log into Dogs and Cats Online to download your current renewal notice.
     
  • Registering a new dog
    To register your new dog please log onto Dogs and Cats Online. When registering your new dog, please ensure that you have with you:
    • An email address (for online access)
    • Driver's license
    • Any concession cards (your card number will be automatically validated upon entry)
    • Microchip number (15 digits)
    • Desexing Certificate
    • Training Certificate (completed level 2, authorised by an recognised trainer).


    Follow these instructions to assist your transition to the new system.

    How to register as a new owner
  • Registration Fees
    A standard dog is a dog that is both microchipped and desexed, attracting a 50% rebate off the full registration fee.
     
    A non-standard dog is a dog that is not both microchipped and desexed, and attracts a full registration fee.
     
      Fee 50% partial rebate
    1-1-19 to 30-6-19
    Non Standard Dog $90.00 $45.00
    Non Standard Dog - Concession $45.00 $22.50
    Non Standard Dog - Trained $72.00 $36.00
    Non Standard Dog - Trained - Concession $36.00 $18.00
    Standard Dog $45.00 $22.50
    Standard Dog - Concession $22.50 $11.25
    Standard Dog - Trained $36.00 $18.00
    Standard Dog - Trained - Concession $18.00 $9.00
    Accredited Assistance Dog no fee no fee
    Racing Greyhound $17.00 n/a
    Working Livestock Dog $17.00 n/a
    Business Registration (per dog) $90.00 $90.00
    OTHER FEES    
    Replacement Disc $10.00 n/a
    Fee for Late Registrations $10.00 n/a
    Multi Dog Permit Application Fee $57.00 n/a
    Multi Dog Permit Variation Application Fee $29.00 n/a
    Daily Holding Fee $55.00 n/a
    Impounding Fee $150.00 n/a

    Guide, Hearing, Disability Dogs
    The Guide Dog and Hearing dog concessions will be applied to dogs that have been approved by the Dog and Cat Management Board or one of the following entities:

    • Guide Dogs Association of SA
    • The Royal Society for the Blind of SA
    • Lions Hearing Dogs.

    Please see the Dog and Cat Management Board to have your dog approved as a disability dog on Dogs and Cats Online, phone 7111 3468, email dcmb@sa.gov.au or visit the Dog and Cat Board website.

    Working Livestock Dogs
    Proof that the dog is currently a working livestock dog, PIC Number, is required for this rebate.

    Racing Greyhound
    To be applicable for the rebate for a GRSA Racing Greyhound, a current racing number is required.

  • Concessions

    A concession fee is available to persons who are holders of current:

    • DVA Gold Card
    • Pensioner Card
    • Senior Health Care Card
    • Health Care Card.

    Proof is required for fee concessions and your card number will be automatically validated upon entry.
  • Payment Options
    Online
    Go to Dogs and Cats Online to renew the registration using your credit card, debit visa/mastercard or BPAY and the renewal code.

    By telephone
    Registration Renewals can be paid by phoning 8372 5111 during business hours, quoting your credit card details. (If you have more than one renewal notice you must pay each as a separate transaction).

    In person
    If you are applying for a concession, please remember to bring in your appropriate documentation to the City of Unley, 181 Unley Road, Unley, between 8.30am–5pm, Monday to Friday.
  • Registration Discs
    From 1 July 2018, all dog registrations will be issued with a permanent registration number. This number will remain with your animal regardless if you change Council areas or transfer of ownership.

    A lifetime disc will be forwarded along with your certificate of registration.
  • Compulsory Microchipping

    The introduction of new laws from 1 July 2018 includes the compulsory microchipping of all dogs and cats, irrespective of their date of birth.

    Microchipping helps lost pets find their way home faster and is a simple procedure that can occur at any age.

    Exemptions

    From 1 July 2018, registered veterinary surgeons will be able to exempt a dog or cat from microchipping (or desexing) if satisfied the procedure would pose an undue risk to the health of the dog or cat, or adversely affect its growth, development or wellbeing.

    If your pet is exempted, you can record this directly into Dogs and Cats Online from 1 July 2018.

    Discount Microchipping

    In addition to visiting your vet, Chip Blitz offers $10 microchipping events at locations around South Australia. Visit the Chip Blitz website to find a location near you.

    For more information on microchipping, visit the Dog and Cat Board, or contact your vet if you have any concerns in relation to your pet.

  • Compulsory Desexing

    The introduction of new laws from 1 July 2018 includes includes the compulsory desexing of all dogs and cats born after 1 July 2018, by a registered veterinary surgeon. This must take place:

    • before the pet is 6 months of age; or
    • within 28 days after the owner takes possession; or
    • if the owner is granted an extension of time, before the day specified.
     

    Exemptions

    • Dogs and cats born before the 1 July 2018
    • Dogs defined as a “Working Livestock Dog”
    • Dogs belonging to Dogs SA members
    • Cats belonging to FASA or Cat Fancy of SA members
    • Greyhounds currently registered to Greyhound Racing SA (retired greyhounds are not exempt)
    • Board exemption.

    Vets may also grant you a desexing exemption based on it posing an undue risk to the health of the dog or cat, or adversely affecting its growth, development or wellbeing.

    For more information on desexing, visit the Dog and Cat Management Board.
  • Assistance Dogs

    Guide, hearing and assistance dog concessions will be applied to dogs that have been approved by the Dog and Cat Management Board or one of the following entities:

    • Guide Dogs Association of SA
    • The Royal Society for the Blind of SA
    • Lions Hearing Dogs.

    Please contact the Dog and Cat Management Board to have your dog approved as an assistance dog. Phone 8155 5662, email dcmb@sa.gov.au  or visit the Dog and Cat Management Board.
  • Change of Address
    Any changes that you need to make to your address, contact details, where your dog is staying, or if you are away for holidays, can be made on Dogs and Cats Online.

    For any other changes please contact the City of Unley by email or phone Council on 8372 5111.

Dog Exercise Areas

The City of Unley's parks and playgrounds encourage community participation and contribute to fostering a vibrant, safe, cohesive and strong community.

The Council provides three types of dog exercise areas. Please be mindful of the prohibited zones.

  • Off-Leash at All Times

    Dogs may be exercised off-leash at all times at:

    • Goodwood Oval, Millswood
    • Ridge Park (oval area), Myrtle Bank
    • The Orphanage (oval areas), Millswood
    • Unley Oval, Unley.
  • Off-Leash Between 5pm and 10am

    Please check for signs indicating designated dog off-leash areas. Dogs may be exercised off-leash between 5pm and 10am at:

    • Everard Park Reserve, Everard Park
    • Forestville Reserve, Forestville
    • Fraser Reserve, Myrtle Bank
    • Fullarton Park, Fullarton
    • Heywood Park, Unley Park (western sector)
    • Howard Florey Reserve, Parkside
    • McLeay Park, Unley
    • Page Park, Clarence Park
    • Scammell Reserve, Myrtle Bank
    • Soutar Park, Goodwood (open play area and south of the east west path)
    • Village Green, Unley
    • Wayville Reserve, Wayville.


    Dogs can be exercised off their leash provided:

    • No organised sporting activities are taking place.
    • The person responsible for the dog maintains ‘effective control’ at all times.


    Effective control means:

    • The dog is restrained by a leash of not more than 2m in length.
    • The dog responds to command, is in close proximity to the person and the person is able to see the dog at all times.
  • On-Leash at All Times

    Dogs must remain on-leash in the following areas:

    • Charles Walk - Linear Walk, Unley
    • Ferguson Avenue Reserve, Highgate
    • Fern Avenue Reserve, Fullarton
    • Glen Osmond Creek - Linear Walk, Unley
    • Hackett Reserve, Parkside
    • Haslop Reserve, Malvern
    • Henry Codd Reserve, Parkside
    • Heywood Park, Unley Park (eastern sector)
    • Katherine Street Reserve, Fullarton
    • Leicester Street Playground (open area), Parkside
    • Morrie Harrell Playground Reserve (open area), Unley
    • North Unley Playground Reserve (open area), Unley
    • Orphanage Park (except for oval areas), Millswood
    • Simpson Parade Reserve, Wayville
    • Soldiers Memorial Gardens, Unley
    • Soutar Park, Goodwood (north of east-west path)
    • Windsor Street – Linear Walk, Unley
    • Yeo Avenue Reserve, Highgate.
  • Prohibited Areas

    It is prohibited to allow your dog:

    • Within any enclosed area where there is children’s play equipment
    • Within 3m of children’s play equipment (if the area is not enclosed)
    • In areas listed on sign posts as being prohibited for dogs
    • In areas set aside by the Unley Council for organised game playing.
  • Victoria Park (City of Adelaide)
    Victoria Park is a great place to exercise your dog. However, please be mindful that the park features a racing practice circuit that is used by cyclists and pedal prix vehicles.

    To ensure your dog's safety, please keep your dog on leash when the track is in use.

Barking Dogs

All dogs make noise on occassion. However, if you are concerned about the level of noise a dog is creating, the first step towards resolving the issue is to speak with the owner in a non-threatening manner and try to reach a compromise.

Often the dog owner is unaware that their dog is causing a nuisance as they may not be at their property when the barking occurs. Most dog owners are willing to work with their neighbours to achieve an amicable outcome.

Print out the letter below and provide it to your neighbour as a first point of contact if their dog's barking is becoming a nuisance.

  • Simple tips to reduce barking
    • Do not reward your dog for barking too much. Instead, reward the dog when it is quiet.
    • If your dog is barking at people or noises on the other side of a fence, move the dog to another part of the yard, or put up a barrier to keep the dog away from that area.
    • If your dog barks at regular disturbances such as children walking to school or rubbish trucks, keep the dog inside or in an enclosed area at these times.
    • If your dog runs along a path or fence barking at passing distractions, put barriers or obstacles in the dog's way to slow it down.
    • Ensure your dog has adequate exercise and obedience training.
    • If you have a large back yard, enclosing your dog in a smaller area to allow it to relax and wait for your return, will allow your dog to believe looking after the place is not its responsibility when you are not home. This can be very stressful to dogs as they also like to rest.
    • Ensure your dog has comfortable shelter, bed or kennel where it likes to sleep rather than guard the property. Make sure that your dog has food, water and shelter from the weather.
    • If your dog is barking through gaps and cracks in the fence, fill them in.
    • If your dog is barking at people it can see passing by, try blocking the dog's view.
    • Teach your dog to stop barking on command. When the dog is barking give a firm command such as 'cease' and call the dog to you. Praise the dog when it stops barking. If the dog will not listen to you, it will need obedience training.
    • Visit the Dog and Cat Management Board for a fact sheet on excessive barking.
    • Visit the Animal Welfare League or phone the League on 8348 1300.
    • Visit the RSPCA or phone the RSPCA on 1300 477 722.
  • Complaints

    Complaints about noisy dogs can be reported on the My Unley website.

    If a complaint about a noisy dog is received, the City of Unley may observe the dog to assess whether it is creating a noise that 'persistently occurs to such an extent that it unreasonably interferes with the peace, comfort or convenience of others' (Section 45A, Part 5 of the Dog and Cat Management Act 1995).

    When the nature of the complaint has been substantiated the dog owner will be sent a notice to rectify within 7 to 21 days, however most complaints about noisy dogs are handled informally and through mediation. This way all parties are given the opportunity to work towards a resolution before any legal action is taken.

  • Formal Complaints
    If the City of Unley is unable to resolve the complaint informally they will commence a formal investigation of the situation that may include speaking with other neighbours who may be affected by the noise of the dog.

    The investigation will include providing the person who made the complaint, the dog owner and surrounding neighbours with Diary Sheets to record the extent and occasions that the dog causes a nuisance. In addition, the person must be prepared to attend Court if necessary to give evidence in order for the Council to proceed when all other measures have been exhausted.

    If the information recorded in the Diary Sheets substantiates the claim that the dog is unreasonably interfering with the peace, comfort or convenience of others the Rangers may issue the dog owner with an expiation notice for the alleged offence.

     

  • Control (Barking Dog) Orders

    If the problem is not resolved the City of Unley may consider issuing a letter informing the owner of Council's intention to issue a Control Order in accordance with the provisions of the Dog and Cat Management Act 1995.

    If the Order is implemented and subsequently contravened, the City of Unley can take steps to give effect to the Order. This will most likely lead to prosecution in a Court of Summary Jurisdiction at which the person who made the complaint will be required to attend.

    Dog owners have the right to appeal the intention to issue an Order.

  • Prosecution

    The Council can instigate an immediate prosecution against a dog owner who allows their dog to create a persistent noise nuisance.

    If a person is found guilty the Court has the ability to:

    • Issue a fine
    • Impose strict controls on the owner of the dog
    • Remove the dog temporarily or permanently.
  • Civil Action

    Any person can institute Civil Proceedings against a dog owner in a Court, however, this course of action can only be handled by the complainant and cannot be handled by the City of Unley.

  • Complaints and grievance procedures
    If you believe that the City of Unley has not handled the matter in accordance with its obligations under the Dog and Cat Management Act please contact us. In the first instance we will seek to resolve any problems.

    Owners may request a formal review of decision (as provided for under Section 270 of the Local Government Act 1999) where a person not directly involved in handling the issue will conduct a review.

    Owners retain the right at any time refer the matter to the State Ombudsman's Office for an investigation.

     

Lost & Found Dogs

If you have lost or found a dog, please phone the City of Unley on 8372 5111. If your call is received after business hours you will be transferred to the City of Unley’s after hours service.

The Council will collect any dogs found wandering at large and transfer them to All Pets Boarding Village, 92 Mount Barker Road, Mt Osmond. All Pets can be contacted on 8379 1995.

Any dog not claimed within 72 hours of the time of being impounded will be sent to the Animal Welfare League, 1-9 Cormack Road, Wingfield. The League be contacted on 8348 1300.

Expiations may be issued for dogs found wandering at large and/or unregistered.
  • Register of Found Dogs

    This is a record of dogs currently held by the City of Unley. Upon release of a dog, impound fees and registration if required will be charged.

    Found Thursday 28 November 2019

    small black grey white corgi x

    Type of Dog: Male, Corgi X, small
    Colour/Markings: black with grey and white markings
    No identification
    Impounded at All Pets Boarding Village, please phone 8379 1995.


    Dogs will appear on this register within 24 hours. For further information please phone our office on 8372 5111.

  • If your dog becomes lost

    If your dog becomes lost you should act quickly to:

     

    Under the Dog and Cat Management Act 1995 any dog that becomes impounded is required to be held by the animal shelters for three working days only and may be sold or put down if not claimed.

    Dogs that are properly identified need not be subjected to this process as they can be quickly returned to their owners. A current telephone number on another disc on your dog's collar is also advisable.

     

  • If you find a stray dog

    If you find a stray dog, try to contain the animal safely if you can, and contact us on 8372 5111 (if after hours you will be transferred to our after hours service).

    If you are unable to contain the animal, advise us of the description of the dog and its whereabouts. Every endeavour will be made to reunite the dog with its owner.

    It is important you do not keep a stray dog you have found as the animal may have been reported missing, may be in need of medication and you will be preventing authorities from returning the dog to its rightful owner.

    Only Dog Management Officers appointed by Councils are empowered to deal with stray or wandering dogs.

    Under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animal Act 1995 it is an offence to abandon a dog and penalties are severe.

Dog Attacks

As a responsible dog owner there are many steps you can take to prevent your dog attacking.

If a dog attack does occur, you should seek medical or veterinary treatment as required and, when safe to do so, report the incident to the City of Unley.
  • Report a dog attack

    When safe to do so, please report the dog attack to the City of Unley on 8372 5111.

    Please seek medical or veterinary treatment as required.

    We will investigate the incident as soon as practicable. To assist the investigating officer, please keep your own notes detailing:

    • The date, time and exact location of the attack
    • A description of the offending dog - identification or registration disc / breed / colour / sex / markings / collar
    • A description of the owner - identification / name / address / contact phone number / male or female / age / hair colour
    • If a car was involved and the offender drove away with the dog - car registration number / make / model / colour
    • A description and photographs of any injuries and location on your body or your pet's body.


    You should also keep copies of any medical certificates/vet or doctor bills as evidence.

  • What happens when a dog attack is reported?

    When a dog attack is reported we:

    • Will take a statement or affidavit from you
    • May take photos of any injuries to yourself, or your animals or birds
    • Contact the dog's owner to understand their perspective of the incident
    • Seek witness statements and other evidence
    • Assess the circumstances and evidence
    • Make a decision for action
    • Issue legal notices as required
    • Inform the parties of the outcome.


    Depending on the severity of the attack, Council may:

    • Issue a warning
    • Impose a control order (Nuisance Order, Dangerous Dog Order, Menacing Dog Order, or Destruction Order) .
    • Impose an expiation of $315
    • Take court action in more serious cases.


    The maximum penalty for a dog attack is $2,500.

    For any further information please contact us on 8372 5111.

  • You are responsible for your dog’s actions

    A dog's owner, or the person who has care and control of the dog, is responsible for its actions and behaviour. It is an offence for a dog to attack, harass or chase:

    • A person
    • Another animal
    • A bird owned by a person.


    Find out more from the Dog and Cat Management Act 1995.

  • Preventing dog bites

    Dogs bite for many reasons. The most common reasons are fear, pain or confusion when mixing with people and other dogs. Ignoring signs of aggression can result in serious injury to you, a member of your family or others.  You can discourage biting by:

    • Avoiding situations that may cause your dog to become nervous or anxious
    • Training your dog - obedience classes help you learn about your dog, its body language and how you can communicate with it
    • Socialising your dog from an early age so that it learns how to mix with other dogs and other people in public
    • Asking your vet for advice if your dog shows any signs of aggression towards people.
  • More information

    For more information on being a good dog owner, visit the Dog and Cat Management Board website.  

Responsible Cat Ownership

Cats are beloved members of the family that provide endless love and affection for their owners.

As a responsible cat owner there are a number of things you can do for the benefit of your cat, the community and the environment.

  • Compulsory Microchipping
    The introduction of new laws from 1 July 2018 includes the compulsory microchipping of all dogs and cats, irrespective of their date of birth. Cats in the City of Unley do not need to be registered and as such no fee is charged, however new state laws require microchipping details to be recorded in the statewide register Dogs and Cats Online.

    Please note, the steps to record microchipping details in Dogs and Cats Online are similar to registering a dog.
     
    Discount Microchipping


    In addition to visiting your vet, Chip Blitz offers $10 microchipping events at locations around South Australia. Visit the Chip Blitz website to find a location near you.

    For more information on microchipping, visit the Dog and Cat Board, or contact your vet If you have any concerns in relation to your pet.

  • Compulsory Desexing

    The introduction of new laws from 1 July 2018 includes includes the compulsory desexing of all dogs and cats born after 1 July 2018, by a registered veterinary surgeon. This must take place:

    • before the pet is 6 months of age; or
    • within 28 days after the owner takes possession; or
    • if the owner is granted an extension of time, before the day specified.
     
    Exemptions
     
    • Dogs and cats born before the 1 July 2018
    • Dogs defined as a “Working Livestock Dog”
    • Dogs belonging to Dogs SA members
    • Cats belonging to FASA or Cat Fancy of SA members
    • Greyhounds currently registered to Greyhound Racing SA (retired greyhounds are not exempt)
    • Board exemption.

    Vets may also grant you a desexing exemption based on it posing an undue risk to the health of the dog or cat, or adversely affecting its growth, development or wellbeing.

    For more information on desexing, visit the Dog and Cat Board.
  • Useful links

Nuisance Cats

Cats can be very efficient hunters of birds and other small wildlife and if not confined to their property may also be the source of frustration to neighbours. Cats wandering into neighbouring properties can cause issues such as fighting with other cats or killing wildlife.
 
Whilst it is more difficult to confine a cat than a dog, there are a number of products and measures that a cat owner can take to properly confine their cat (such as cat runs or enclosures, or simply keeping the cat inside).
  • My neighbour has complained about my cat

    If your cat is not adequately confined to your property then it is likely that it will wander onto neighbouring properties.  This can sometimes cause a number of issues for your neighbours. As the owner of a cat, it is your responsibility to ensure that your cat does not cause a nuisance.
     
    In extreme cases Council can take formal action against a cat owner if it is proven that the cat is causing a nuisance.
     
    The definition of a nuisance is set out in the Local Nuisance and Litter Control Act 2016, and is defined as any adverse effect on an amenity value of an area that is caused by an animal that unreasonably interferes with, or is likely to interfere unreasonably with, the enjoyment of the area by persons occupying a place within, or lawfully resorting to the area.
     
    It is important to remember that in a lot of cases your neighbour may feel that they have been putting up with the nuisance for a period of time before they approached you. 
     
    Council acknowledges that these matter can be very emotive and the source of disputes.

    If you are unable to resolve the issue with your neighbour please contact the Council for advice on your rights and legal responsibilities.

  • My neighbour's cat is causing a nuisance
    Council acknowledges that cats can cause a nuisance to residents by doing things such as fighting, harassing or attacking other animals. These issues can be annoying and can interfere with your enjoyment of your property.

    If your neighbour’s cat is becoming a nuisance, we suggest printing out the below letter and giving to your neighbour as a first point of contact. The letter also provides some simple tips for your neighbour to reduce incidents of nuisance.


    It is important to remember that in many cases, even though the nuisance may have been occurring for a while, the owner of the cat may not be aware of the issue. With this in mind, Council encourages you to seek an amicable resolution.

    If you are unable to resolve the issue with your neighbour please contact the Council for advice. Council also has powers under the Local Nuisance and Litter Control Act 2016 to investigate a nuisance being caused by a pet cat to determine if they are at a level that would constitute a breach of the Act.

    Investigations into reports of a pet cat causing a nuisance will be allocated to a General Inspector. You will be provided with a Cat Nuisance Diary and you will be required to provide evidence documenting the type and extent of the nuisance, including how this is unreasonably interfering with your enjoyment of the area.

    Council acknowledges that investigations into nuisance cats can be quite time consuming for all involved. However, the cat owner has the right to appeal any formal action taken by Council to the South Australian Civil Administrative Tribunal (SACAT). Therefore Council must ensure that there is sufficient evidence to justify any action taken should an appeal be lodged with SACAT.

    Should you require any further information please contact Council’s Customer Experience Centre on 8372 5111.

  • Stray or feral cat entering your property

    What is the difference between a stray and a feral cat?

    • Stray cats have at some stage been a pet. These cats are more likely to be handled and are generally more likely to seek human interaction. Stray cats may currently be pet cats that are just wandering from their property or for some reason have been separated from their family (they may have been lost or abandoned) and are now having to fend for themselves.
    • Feral cats are cats that have never been domesticated and have always had to fend for themselves, normally by killing wildlife and scavenging for food. True feral cats are wild animals and will normally not want any interaction with humans.


    If you believe that a cat has taken up residence on your property the Council recommends that you do the following:

    • Speak to your neighbours to determine if the cat belongs to someone.
    • If you cannot identify where the cat is from then you may wish to catch the cat in a humane cat trap/cage for the purpose of taking the cat (within 12 hours of capture) to either the RSPCA, the Animal Welfare League or a veterinary clinic.


    ​It is important to remember that it is illegal to trap an identified cat. If you trap a cat that either has identification or you know who owns the cat, then you must release the cat immediately.

    Council does have a limited number of cat cages that can be hired out to residents for this purpose.

    Council may provide additional assistance to people that are elderly or disabled and are unable to trap and transport the cats themselves. For further information on this service please contact Council on 8372 5111.