Restricted and dangerous dogs in NSW
Council officers authorised under the Companion Animals Act have the power to seize a restricted or dangerous dog if the officer is satisfied that any of the below control requirements outlined on this page have not been complied with in relation to the dog.
Owners of restricted and dangerous dogs must notify Council within 24 hours if:
Definition of a restricted dog in NSW
Council declared restricted dogs
If a council issues a dog owner with a ‘Notice of Intention to Declare a Dog to be a Restricted Dog’, the owner has 28 days in which to complete the process where they may elect to have the dog’s breed and temperament assessed. If you receive such a notice you should contact Council for further information. Please note: this process does not apply to Declared Dangerous Dogs.
A dog is 'dangerous' if it has, without provocation attacked or killed a person or animal, or, repeatedly threatened to attack or repeatedly chased a person or animal. A dog may also be declared 'dangerous' if it has displayed unreasonable aggression towards a person or animal. 'Dangerous dogs' in NSW are dogs that are the subject of a declaration made by a council or a court under the Act. Council must have given notice to the owner of a dog of the council’s intention to declare the dog to be dangerous.
The owner of a restricted or declared dangerous dog must ensure that each of the control requirements listed under sections 51 and 56 of the Act and the relevant parts of the Regulation are complied with. Council can advise you of these requirements in full. All restricted and dangerous dogs must by law be desexed. It is an offence to sell or give away a dangerous or restricted dog or sell or give away a dog subject to a notice of intention to declare dangerous or restricted.
The dog must not at any time be in the sole charge of a person under 18 years of age.
While the dog is on the property on which the dog is ordinarily kept, the dog must be kept in an enclosure that complies with the requirements prescribed by the regulations.
Displaying warning signs
One or more signs must be clearly displayed on the property showing the words 'Warning Dangerous Dog' in letters clearly visible from the boundaries of the property. Whenever the dog is outside its prescribed enclosure, the dog:
Failure to comply
An owner can be issued with a fixed penalty notice of $1320 for failure to comply with any of the above control requirements. A maximum penalty of $55,000 or two years imprisonment or both can be applied if a dangerous or restricted dog attacks or bites another person or if an incident is the result of the owner’s failure to comply with any one of the control requirements of sections 51 or 56 of the Act. Dependent on the circumstances, these offences may also result in the seizure and destruction of a dog. Restricted dog owners need to know that their dog(s) may be seized and destroyed in the following circumstances:
|Offence under Companion Animals Act 1998||Imprisonment provision (max penalty)||Maximum Penalty amount|
|Restricted or dangerous dog attacks/harasses/chases person or animal||No||$33,000|
|Restricted or dangerous dog attacks or bites a person due to failure to comply with control requirements||2 years (and possible immediate destruction of dog)||$55,000|
|Restricted or dangerous dog attacks or bites a person and has previously attacked||2 years (and possible immediate destruction of dog)||$22,000|
|Fail to comply with control requirements for restricted or dangerous dog||No||$16,500|
|Sell or advertise restricted dog||No||$16,500|
|Accept ownership of restricted dog||No||$16,500|
|Breed or advertise available to breed restricted dog||No||$16,500|
|Dangerous or restricted dog encouraged to attack||6 months||$11,000|
This page last updated 10 April, 2013 3:12 PM