Animal Regulations Animal Regulations

New animal management laws to encourage responsible pet ownership
The State Government has strengthened the legislation concerning the management of cats and dogs, with the passing of the Animal Management (Cats and Dogs) Act 2008
The new Act places greater responsibility on the community at large and gives councils around the state the mandate to enforce the legislation to encourage responsible pet ownership.
The new legislation includes mandatory registration of cats and dogs, microchipping at the point-of-sale and transfers of cats and dogs.
Hinchinbrook Shire Council requires all pet owners to duly register their animals as required by the legislation. Registration is required because the new legislation makes it mandatory. It also goes towards Council's administrative costs of complying with the State Government's requirements for registration.
For your convenience, application forms are available from the Council Office or may be downloaded from our website at .
For more information on animal registrations please go to our animal registration web page .
What animals can I keep in a township?
Currently under review.
Please contact Environmental Health Services on 4776 4607 or email for further information.
What do I do if I want more animals?
You need to apply for a license to do so.
How do I Apply for a license?
Please fill out the form "Application to keep an animal in a township" on the Animal Regulations web page on our website: . You need to pay the relevant fees at the same time.
What about renewals?
License renewal notices are sent out at the same time as registration renewal notices, which is mid-June of each year. It is the residents responsibility to ensure both registration and license renewals are paid before the due date. Residents are reminded of the substantial discount given if the renewal of the registration of their cats and/or dogs is done on or before 31st July each year.  Residents are also entitled to a further discount if their animal/s have been desexed within the last financial year. Documentation will be required should any resident wish to claim this added discount.
Please don't forget to tell us if your residential/postal address has changed or if any of your personal contact details have changed (eg new mobile phone number etc).
What's the difference between a registration and a license?
The Animal Management (Cats and Dogs) Act 2008 requires that generally all cats and dogs are required to be registered with Council.  Hinchinbrook Shire Council has adopted a Local Law for the purposes of restricting the number and type of animals kept within the Shire in a township. Under the Local Law these animals are required to be licensed.
For what other animals do I need a license?
Anyone wishing to keep particular animals, namely -
·         more than 2 cats over the age of 3 months;
·         any horse, donkey, goat, sheep, deer; cattle, swine, rooster, peafowl, or guinea fowl
·         more than 2 dogs over the age of 3 months
on any land within a township must make an application to Council to keep the animal/s.

What do I need to do for Council to grant a license?

Make written application to Council for a license which is to be accompanied with the appropriate fee.


Before applying for a license you must be able to meet the following requirements –


  • Any land, enclosure or building in which an animal is kept must be kept in compliance with the relevant sections of Part 17 (Vermin Control) of the Health Regulation 1996;
  • An enclosure built for the purpose of housing an animal must be kept in a clean and sanitary condition, in good repair and appearance, and free from flies, rats, other vermin and offensive odours;
  • An enclosure must provide adequate space for any animal to be kept therein;
  • An enclosure or area where animals are kept must be thoroughly cleaned once a week and effectively treated with an insecticide at least twice a year;
  • Animals must be provided with and have access to adequate shelter, clean drinking water and appropriate food to maintain the animals' good health;
  • Storage of food and water for animals must be kept in compliance with the relevant sections of Part 17 (Vermin Control) of the Health Regulation 1996;
  • An enclosure constructed for the purposes of housing poultry or birds shall, in addition to the general enclosure requirements, not be situated within one and a half (1.5) metres of a property boundary;
  • That public health nuisances must not be perpetrated from the premises on which the animals are kept;
  • That prompt veterinary or other appropriate treatment must be provided in cases of disease or injury;
  • Accommodation and equipment be provided which suits the physical and behavioural requirements of the animals; and
  • Protection be provided for the animals from adverse natural or artificial environmental conditions, other animals and interference from humans; and
  • Sufficient space be provided for the animals so as to prevent overcrowding and allow them to stand and move about freely; and
  • Enclosures be provided and maintained to prevent the animals escaping from the premises; and
  • Enclosures be sprayed or dusted with insecticide or larvicide or disinfectant at least twice in each year for the purpose of fly, insect and/or disease control;
  • In the case of animals kept on public land the holder of the licence must indemnify the Hinchinbrook Shire Council from and against all claims, demands, actions, suits and proceedings arising from the keeping of the animal or animals as prescribed on the license with such indemnification supported by a current public liability insurance cover and must hold free the Hinchinbrook Shire Council from any claim in relation to litigation from third parties during the term of the license.

Council also asks that to support your application that you –


  • Obtain written notification from all adjoining landholders of occupied houses stating that they do not have any objection for the issue of the license applied for (attach letters to application); and
  • Where you are not the owner(s) of the property, you obtain written notification from the owner(s) stating that they do not have any objection for the issue of the license applied for (attach letter to application if applicable).
Council Officers may impound your animal if it is found at large in a public place or on another person's property. Council's policy is to keep impounded animals for a period of 3 working days for an unregistered dog, and 5 working days for a registered dog. After this time the animal may be sold/rehoused or destroyed.
What do I do if my animal is impounded?
Contact Council on 4776 4607 as soon as you can to make arrangements to have your animal released. You will need to pay the relevant release and sustenance fees (and registration fees if applicable) or Council cannot return your animal to you.
Need More Information?
To log a request or for further information about this topic please contact Environmental Health Services on 4776 4607 or email .


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Animal regulations

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