Your dog or cat is required to be micro-chipped by 12 weeks old and must not be sold unless they have been micro-chipped (even if the animal is less than 12 weeks old when it is sold)
A vet or accredited implanter can microchip your pet and fill out a Permanent Identification Form. The vet or implanter will forward the form to Council to have your pet entered on the NSW Companion Animals Register. You will then be sent a Certificate of Identification and Lifetime Registration form.
Fines: If you fail to have your cat or dog micro-chipped when required to do so, you may be issued with fines starting at $165 to a potential maximum of $5,500.
All dogs and cats, other than exempt ones, must be registered from the time the animal is six months old. Registration is a one-off process that applies for the lifetime of the animal.
Registration fees are set by the NSW Government: NSW Registration fees
Some discounts apply for de-sexed animals only. Additional discounts are available for pensioners or for de-sexed animals adopted from a recognized animal rescue agency or pound. To receive these discounts you will need to present evidence by way of a de-sexing certificate and, if applicable a pensioner card or rescue agency adoption papers.
Register and pay your lifetime registration fee on-line at the NSW Pet Registry website
NSW Pet Registry
Complete and lodge the Lifetime Registration Form with us and we will issue you with a Certificate of Registration
Some discounts apply for de-sexed animals and also for owners who are pensioners. To receive these you will need to present evidence by way of a de-sexing certificate or a pensioner card.
Fines: If you fail to register your cat or dog when required to do so you may be issued with fines beginning at $275 up to $6,500
In addition to being micro-chipped all dogs, except working dogs, have to wear a collar and tag showing the dog's name and your address or telephone number when outside its own property.
If you fail to comply with this requirement, you may be liable for a maximum penalty of $880 or $5,500 for a restricted, dangerous or menacing dog.
All cats, except cats being exhibited at a show (or in transit to or from a show at which they will be exhibited), must have some form of identification when in a public place.
Cats do not have to wear a collar and tag with your contact details on it, but must be micro-chipped and lifetime-registered.
If you fail to comply with this requirement, you may be liable for a maximum penalty of $880.
It is the responsibility of the original or “old” owner to ensure a Change of Owner Form is signed and completed by both parties and submitted to Council. All forms together with proof should be submitted.
It is an offence to sell or give away a dog or cat that is not microchipped. A minimum fine of $165 per animal applies to both the person selling the animal and the person receiving an animal that is not microchipped.
Alternatively, the whole process can be completed on-line at the Pet Registry.
Bought or been given a pet but have not received any paperwork - what should you do?
If you have bought or been given a dog or cat and you have not received any paperwork regarding the transfer of ownership on the NSW Companion Animals Register, you should contact the previous owner to ensure a Change of Owner Form is sent to Council.
If you can't contact the previous owner, you will need to complete a Statutory Declaration and submit this to Council. You will need to know your pet's microchip number. Your vet can assist with this. We will then add your details to your pet's information.
Some companion animals are trained to provide assistance to people with a disability to help alleviate the effect of that disability. These assistance animals are not pets. They provide an important service that helps people to more fully participate in personal and public life activities with more confidence and independence.
What is an assistance animal?
An assistance animal in NSW is a dog or other animal that is either:
- Trained to assist a person with a disability to alleviate the effect of that disability, and, to meet standards of hygiene and behaviour appropriate for an animal in a public place
- Accredited under a law of a State or Territory that provides for the accreditation of animals trained to assist a person with a disability to alleviate the effect of that disability
- Accredited by an animal training organisation prescribed by the Commonwealth
A working dog cannot also be an assistance animal
What does the owner of an assistance animal need to do?
Like all other companion animals, assistance animals need to be micro-chipped and registered in NSW. However, no fee is charged for registering an assistance animal.
Registration lasts for the life of each animal. If you change address or your animal goes missing or dies, please notify us.
It is also strongly recommended that assistance animals are vaccinated and de sexed. Do not train a restricted or dangerous dog as an assistance animal.
How do I register my assistance animal?
Once the animal has been microchipped by a vet or authorised identifier, the owner should contact our Customer Service Team to apply for a no-fee registration.
Our Customer Service Team are entitled to request reasonable proof that your animal is a genuine assistance animal. This may include:
- Proof that you have a disability
- Proof that your animal has been trained to alleviate the effect of the disability
- Proof that your animal is trained to meet standards of hygiene and behaviour appropriate for an animal in a public place
Contact our Customer Service Team for advice about what kinds of proof are acceptable.
Note: A farm dog which is a pet living on a rural property is NOT considered to be a working dog
Does my farm working dog have to be registered?
A working dog is defined in the Companion Animals Act as a dog used primarily for the purpose of droving, tending, working or protecting stock, and includes a dog which is being trained as a working dog.
If your working dog is ordinarily kept in the Western Division of NSW that does not fall within a local government area or on land rated as farmland, it does not have to be microchipped or registered. However, you should consider having your working dog microchipped and registered for its protection. You will not have to pay to register your working dog.
For more information on how the law describes a working dog for purposes of micro-chipping and registration exemption visit the NSW Government website
Council can arrange to have the animals tested for proof of working dog capability on either sheep or cattle to allow residents to prove their claim if the status of the dog is questioned.
For all other working dogs, that do not meet the exemption requirements, micro-chipping and lifetime registration is required, but no registration fee applies.
How do I register my working dog?
Once the dog has been micro-chipped by a vet or authorised identifier, contact our Customer Service Team to apply for a no fee registration.
Our Customer Service Team are entitled to request reasonable proof that your animal is a genuine working dog. Contact us for advice about what kinds of proof are acceptable.