Animal Management By-Laws

The new City of Palmerston (Animal Management) By-Laws are now in effect as of 1 July 2024.

Registration enables City of Palmerston Rangers to identify and promptly reunite lost dogs and cats with their owners. If you are living in the Palmerston municipality, it is a recommended that owners register and microchip their cats and dogs as of 1 July 2024. 

Key changes since 1 July 2024 include:

  • Compulsory registration for cats and dogs as of 1 September 2024.
  • Cat fees waived for the first six months and applicable from 1 March 2025.
  • Compulsory microchipping for registered cats and dogs, with a six-month grace period from 1 September 2024 to 28 February 2025.
  • Maximum of two dogs and two cats per property without a licence.
  • Domestic livestock and poultry owners must apply for a Property Identification Code.

To register your cat or dog, visit Animal Registration.

View information relating to domestic livestock and poultry

How we got here

The full process of By-Law preparation and enactment can take more than 18-24 months, from initial consultation, drafting and publication through to enactment. We are committed to working in partnership with the community to make the new By-Laws as effective as possible. 

Community Consultation - New By-Laws

Community consultation on the new By-Laws was open from 15 January - 12 February 2024, which included public information sessions at the following dates and locations:

Date Time Location

Wednesday, 17 January

5:30pm to 6:45pm Palmerston Recreation Centre*
Friday, 19 January 5:30pm to 6:45pm  Marlow Lagoon Dog Park
Saturday, 20 January 8:30am to 10:00am Marlow Lagoon Dog Park
Saturday, 27 January 9:00am to 11:00am Gateway Shopping Centre
Sunday, 28 January 8:00am to 9:30am Bakewell Dog Park
Thursday, 1 February 11:00am to 1:00pm Palmerston Recreation Centre
Friday, 2 February 3:30pm to 5:30pm City of Palmerston Library
Saturday, 3 February 5:00pm to 6:45pm Zuccoli Dog Park
Thursday, 8 February 5:00pm start Council Chambers**

*Location was changed from Bakewell Dog Park to Palmerston Recreation Centre due wet weather.
**This was a Palmerston Animal Management Network meeting held in Council Chambers and open for the general public. 

Community Consultation - Animal Management Policy 

Community consultation on the Animal Management Policy was open from 14 May - 4 June 2024.

This policy goes hand in hand with the By-Laws, and was drafted following feedback received from the community, in order to encourage responsible animal ownership, public safety and community wellbeing in the Palmerston municipality. The Palmerston community are encouraged to read the important information below .

Important Information

For any questions:
Phone (08) 8935 9922

Initial Consultation Outcomes

We would like to thank the community for their responses during three Animal Management By-Laws consultation in total (including one consultation on the Animal Management Policy), which occurred in 2021 and 2024. To view a summary of the engagement elements from 2021, please download the 2021 Consultation Outcomes Flyer and the community consultation report from 2021


When were the first City of Palmerston Animal Management By-Laws created and why change them now?

The Palmerston (Animal Management) By-Laws came into force in 1999, 25 years ago. Since then, we’ve seen significant population growth and gaps within the By-Law scope have emerged. Best practice relating to animal ownership, welfare and regulation have evolved and it’s time we amend our By-Laws to reflect community expectations and better govern domestic animal ownership.

What are the gaps and issues City of Palmerston hopes to address in the new Animal Management By-Laws?

City of Palmerston is looking to address dog attacks and menaces, the ability to declare dogs dangerous, better manage nuisance behaviours, licensing differences including limiting the total number of animals per property, cat management including registration.

What happens if I have more than the allowable limit for existing animal licences?

A licence or registration issued, granted or renewed under the former By-Laws that is in force immediately before the commencement continues as if the licence or registration were issued, granted or renewed under these new By-Laws.

When will the new Animal Management By-Laws come into effect?

1 July 2024.

Are there any anticipated costs associated with the proposed changes to the By-Laws?

There are no anticipated costs associated with the proposed changes.

How did City of Palmerston decide on By-Law amendments? 

Regulatory Services worked with key service providers and other government agencies to develop a concept idea and a community consultation delivery plan. The idea was to gain an understanding of key areas of interest and changes within animal management, to ensure the effective adoption of desired changes by the community as well as ensuring the By-Laws are modern and contemporary. 

The first community consultation ran for 60 days in 2021, with feedback from the community being a significant factor in formulating the new Animal Management By-Laws.