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Zero tolerance approach to unregistered dogs

3 December 2004

Auckland City takes zero tolerance approach to unregistered dogs

Auckland City’s Planning and Regulatory Committee has endorsed the council’s policy for the non-payment of fees for unregistered dogs as ‘zero tolerance’.

Under the Dog Control Act 1996, owners are required to re-register their dogs by 31 July each year. Each year a number of owners fail to meet this deadline.

“Auckland City acknowledges that there are those dog owners who genuinely forget to re-register their dog, however it is difficult for us to identify these people,” says the chairperson of the Planning and Regulatory Committee, Councillor Glenda Fryer. “Our warning system reminds those who have just overlooked it and gives them ample time to get their dog registered before further action is taken.”

A number of dogs remain unregistered despite the time that has elapsed since last year’s registration period expired. Auckland City is taking a significant step to ensure these dogs are not roaming by impounding them.

The council has impounded more than 700 unregistered dogs since 1 July this year.

Auckland City will review this aspect of the dog policy in six months, to assess the effectiveness of enforcement measures.

In February next year the Planning and Regulatory Committee will also look at the merits and practicality of introducing a bylaw to require shop owners to inform the council when a pet is sold or given away (similar to a Hastings District Council bylaw). It will also review the euthanasing of impounded dogs in Auckland City, with the aim of ensuring that dogs with suitable temperaments are re-housed if possible.

“We would like to see that dogs which would make good pets are re-housed,” says Ms Fryer. “Dogs can make a wonderful addition to a family and we would like to see those which have been impounded get a second chance where possible.”


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