Council can only act upon issues that we know about, so please, if you have a concern or complaint contact us.
If the complaint is about a barking dog please visit the barking dog information page
If you have concerns for the welfare of an animal please visit the RSPCA Website and report the matter to RSPCA inspectors.
Council is obliged to deal with all complaints and concerns properly and professionally. Complaints may relate to unauthorised or prohibited activities, failure to comply with aspects of legislation, or may be contrary to the terms of consent, licensing, or approval.
Complaints can be received via telephone, email, or in writing. All complaints are confidential, however anonymous complaints may not be investigated.
Once a complaint is received, council will address the matter and take appropriate action. Enforcement may include issuing a formal warning or caution, referral to another relevant agency, or issuing a Penalty Infringement Notice.
If little action is taken in relation to a matter, you are entitled to to ask for reasons regarding the decision.
If you are a victim or witness to a dog attack, or are the alleged owner of a dog that has been involved in an attack, please reach out to Council Rangers on 1300 345 345 for information on what to do next.
What is considered an attack?
The Companion Animals Act 1998 states that "If a dog rushes at, attacks, bites, harasses or chases any person or animal (other than vermin), whether or not any injury is caused to the person or animal—
(a) the owner of the dog, or
(b) if the owner is not present at the time of the offence and another person who is of or above the age of 16 years is in charge of the dog at that time—that other person,
is guilty of an offence."
Statement forms can be provided to you by a Ranger. Some examples of relevant information that you may wish to include in a statement are listed below:
- WHEN exactly did the attack take place, including date and time
- WHERE exactly did the attack take place (verge / footpath / road / reserve or park / private address), which direction were you heading, which way did the attacking dog come from
- WHO was involved in the attack, providing names and addresses where known or descriptions of people and dogs involved (colour / markings / sex / breed)
- WHAT happened, immediately before, during and after the attack, especially the actions of the attacking dog, describe any injuries you / your dog received and any medical / vet treatment that was provided
To report a nuisance dog or cat please phone 1300 345 345.
Owners of dogs/cats have responsibilities under the Companion Animals Act 1998 and the Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997 - to ensure their dogs/cats do not exhibit nuisance behaviour or emit offensive noise.
The Companion Animals Act 1998 states that a dog is a nuisance if the dog—
- is habitually at large, or
- makes a noise, by barking or otherwise, that persistently occurs or continues to such a degree or extent that it unreasonably interferes with the peace, comfort or convenience of any person in any other premises, or
- repeatedly defecates on property (other than a public place) outside the property on which it is ordinarily kept, or
- repeatedly runs at or chases any person, animal (other than vermin and, in relation to an animal, otherwise than in the course of droving, tending, working or protecting stock) or vehicle, or
- endangers the health of any person or animal (other than vermin and, in relation to an animal, otherwise than in the course of droving, tending, working or protecting stock), or
- repeatedly causes substantial damage to anything outside the property on which it is ordinarily kept.
The Companion Animals Act 1998 states that a cat is a nuisance if the cat—
- makes a noise that persistently occurs or continues to such a degree or extent that it unreasonably interferes with the peace, comfort or convenience of any person in any other premises, or
- repeatedly damages anything outside the property on which it is ordinarily kept.