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Cat By-Laws

Under the Dog and Cat Management Act 1995, local councils can introduce By-laws for the management of cats. Individual councils publish information relating to their by-laws on their website.

Councils may appoint cat management officers who have the authority to seize, detain or destroy unidentified cats in their council area.

Cat management By-laws can include:

  • Registration
  • Micrcohipping
  • Desexing
  • Limit on numbers
  • Nuisance clauses
  • Confinement/curfew

South Australian councils which require your cat to be registered:

  • Mitcham
  • Flinders Ranges
  • Kangaroo Island
  • Roxby Downs
  • Victor Harbor
  • Whyalla

South Australian councils that require your cat to be micrcochipped:

  • Mitcham
  • Flinders Ranges
  • Kangaroo Island
  • Roxby Downs
  • Whyalla
  • Victor Harbor

South Australian councils that require your cat to be desexed:

  • Flinders Ranges
  • Kangaroo Island
  • Roxby Downs

Councils can offer exemptions if you are a cat breeder or upon veterinary advice.

Is there a limit on the number of cats I can own?

This will depend on whether or not your local council as specified a limit of number in its cat by-law. Most South Australian councils have a set number of cats (usually 2) included in their cat by-law.  Contact your local council to find out the requirements in your area.

Whilst in most cases the number of cats owned it’s not usually a cause for concern, the by-law provision can help to control the problem of hoarding where excessive numbers of cats are housed inappropriately and the associated health, nuisance and welfare issues.·        

Council can grant exemptions if certain conditions are met, for example where there are no insanitary conditions, the cats are not causing a nuisance and each cat is desexed. Exemption can also apply to cat breeders.

Template Cat By-law

A template Cat By-law has been developed by the Dog and Cat Management Board and the Local Government Association of South Australia.

The template By-law contains suggested clauses to deal with:

  • Identification through microchipping;
  • Mandatory desexing;
  • Dealing with nuisance cats; and
  • The maximum number of cats.

Councils may also choose to introduce a registration system for cats.

Guide to Preparing a Cat By-law

A Guide to Preparing a Cat By-law has also been produced to assist councils through the process of community consultation and deciding which of the clauses in the template By-law are appropriate for their local area.

To view the Guide click here

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