Responsible Pet Ownership


Choosing a pet

Deciding to have a pet requires some careful thought and planning. Have a look at this information to help you to make the right decision and be a responsible pet owner.


Cats make great pets and can be wonderful companions. Responsible cat ownership includes caring for your pet's welfare needs, registration, microchipping and complying with local requirements for keeping cats on your property. The state government department website provides all you need to know about keeping your feline friend happy and healthy.

In May 2016 Council declared two Orders in relation to the responsible ownership of cats in the Shire. These Orders came into effect on 10 April 2017:

  • Council will not register a new cat unless the cat is desexed or is exempt under the Domestic Animals Act 1994 (the Act and amendments) from any requirement to be desexed. Undesexed cats that are currently registered will not be affected.
  • Under section 26 of the Act Council will require cat owners to contain their cats to their property between sunset and sunrise, unless restrained and otherwise controlled and in the presence of their owner. Cat owners are reminded that cats can still be trapped on private property during the daytime if they are causing a nuisance for the property owner

Benefits of containment and information for cat owners

  • Contrary to popular belief, cats don’t have to roam. Cats should be kept indoors at night (house, enclosure, shed or garage) and preferably confined to the property at all times.
  • Providing their basic needs are met, cats can enjoy longer and healthier lives when safely contained to the property.
  • They won’t be hit by cars, injured in fights, become lost or catch fatal diseases such as feline AIDS.
  • Containing cats to the property helps protect wildlife from predation, and prevents neighbourhood disputes about cat nuisance issues.
  • Cat confinement is also a legal requirement with an increasing number of councils.
  • Most cats should adapt well to living indoors and in an enclosure, particularly if they have been kept in this way from an early age.
  • However, adult cats used to roaming outdoors may have more difficulty in adjusting. If this is the case, you can consult your vet for advice.
  • Desexing cats also reduces their desire to roam and helps prevent behavioural problems.
  • You might consider - cat proof fencing (ie modifying existing fencing to make it ‘cat proof’, giving your cat free access to parts of, or your entire, yard)
  • You might consider - a cat enclosure attached to another structure eg the house or a shed),
  • You might consider - a free standing cat enclosure.

More information can be found at

Cats that are exempt from desexing under the Domestic Animals Act 1994

 I want to register my cat but it is not desexed

  • Local vets can be found using the Yellow Pages
  • Your vet can give you further guidance on desexing your kitten/cat
  • Desexing assistance may be available for owners experiencing significant financial hardship on a case by case basis through completion of an application.


Dogs can provide unconditional love and help to keep us happy and healthy. It is important to be a responsible dog owner and the state government website provides helpful information on looking after your dog's welfare as well as information on children and dogs, dog breeding, restricted breeds and legal requirements for dog owners.

Dog barking

Excessive dog barking can be annoying for neighbours and also for the dog owner. The state government website has lots of useful information about what you do to help solve the problem both as a neighbour or as an owner.

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