Skip navigation links
Home
About Rockdale City Council
About Rockdale
Development
News & Events
Online Services & Payment
Contact Us
Site Disclaimer
Council Elections
Our Town Centres
print
Animals

Local Orders Policy No. 2

Preamble I Aims I Scope I What are the responsibilities of the animal owner I What are Council's powers and responsibilities I How does Council give orders I What else do I need to know I Definitions

Preamble

Dogs, cats and other animals are kept by residents of the Rockdale Local Government Area (LGA) usually without difficulty. The keeping of animals can be very rewarding for both animals and humans.

Occasionally a nuisance arises caused by the keeping of animals which results in complaints being lodged with Council. Nuisances can be reported by calling Council's Customer Service on 1300 581 299 and raising a request for further investigation.

To assist residents, Council has developed this Policy for the keeping of animals for domestic purposes under Section 159 of the Local Government Act 1993. It is not intended to completely regulate the manner in which animals are kept, but rather to guide residents with some reasonable limits on maximum number and circumstances under which certain animals may be kept in the interests of amenity and public health.

Aims

  1. To establish a Policy for the keeping of animals for domestic purposes, in particular:
  2. To minimise local nuisance and maximise residential amenity
  3. To ensure that the keeping of animals does not compromise minimum standards of public health
  4. To provide information about relevant Regulations and Regulatory bodies
  5. To state Council's Policy and recommendations about the keeping of animals

Scope

This policy applies to premises upon which animals are kept for domestic reasons, including for pets, and other similar interests.

This policy does not apply to the keeping of animals for business or commercial purposes where the prior Development Consent of Council is required.

What are the Responsibilities of the Animal Owner

Do not keep an inappropriate number of animals in relation to the size and nature of the premises.

  1. Only keep a kind of animal that is suitable for your premises. Extra care is needed in selecting an animal for a home unit and high rise dwellings - check with the owner or Secretary of the Body Corporate
  2. To keep animals under conditions that do not:
    • Create unsanitary or unhealthy conditions
    • Attract vermin
    • Create offensive noise or odours
    • Cause a drainage nuisance
    • Create an unreasonable annoyance to neighbouring residents
  3. To apply for Council approval to erect an animal shelter unless exempted under Council's Local Approvals Policy No. 1 for the erection of buildings. Council approval is not required if the shelter is erected in the rear yard, and has a maximum area of 10m and a maximum height of 2.4m

What are Council's Powers and Responsibilities

Council's responsibility is to ensure the maintenance of a reasonable level of residential amenity and public health.

If necessary, Council can issue an 'Order' on the person occupying premises to comply with this Policy, or, with additional requirements depending on the circumstances. An Order may:

  1. Prohibit the keeping of animals
  2. Restrict the number of animals being kept
  3. Specify the manner in which animals must be kept

If a premises is vacant, an Order may be served on the owner of the property.

Council also has other powers that relate to the control of animals under:

  • The Companion Animals Act 1998
  • The Protection of the Environment Operations Act 1997
  • The Food Act 2003 (animals not to be kept where food is handled for sale)
  • The Impounding Act 1993

How does Council Give Orders

When a complaint is received, a Council officer would normally contact the person(s) keeping animals and make an inspection. If the complaint is justified, the Officer would seek the co-operation of the person keeping the animal(s) to resolve any problem.

If a problem cannot be resolved by consultation, Council may decide to issue an 'Order'. This is a legal notice issued under the provisions of the Local Government Act 1993. Normally, a person will be given the opportunity to comment before the Order is issued. In urgent situations, an Emergency Order may be issued without prior notice. These procedures are fully explained in Council's Policy called "Local Orders Policy No. 1 - Administrative Provisions".

What Else Do I Need To Know

There are other authorities which have various interests in the keeping of animals. These include the National Parks and Wildlife Service regarding native animals; the RSPCA regarding cruelty to animals; the NSW Agriculture Department regarding noxious animals and the Commonwealth Department of Primary Industry regarding quarantine of imported animals. It is your responsibility to comply with relevant laws.

Definitions

Animal:

Includes a mammal, bird, reptile, amphibian, bees and fish but does not include a human being for the purpose of this Policy.

Premises:

Includes buildings, parts of buildings, land whether built upon or not, sheds or other structures, tents, swimming pools, vessels and boats, and vehicles within premises.

Group 1 - Common Animals

Type of Animal

Maximum number (excludes offspring to 3 months of age)

Minimum distance from certain buildings*

Regulations and Requirements

Advice and Recommendations

Dogs

2
(amended 25/10/1995)

-

More than 1 dog will not be appropriate in many situations. Compliance with all requirements of Companion Animals Act including registration and control of dogs. Prevent offensive howling or barking

Adequate fencing. Obedience training. Desexing. Proper care. Microchip identification (veterinary service)

Cats

2
(amended 25/10/1995)

-

Responsible control to prevent nuisance. More than one cat will not be appropriate in many situations

Desexing. Identity collars with two bells. Microchip identification (veterinary service). Do not dump unwanted cats

Poultry (domesticated and guinea fowl poultry other than fowls including duck, geese, turkey, peafowl and other pheasants)

10 and under
10+

4.5m
30m

Local Government Act Regulations apply including:-
Notices may be served by Council. Greater distances may be required. No nuisance permitted. No danger or injury to health permitted. Clean sand or impervious surface under roosts. Exempted if more than 15.2m from a dwelling, public hall or school. Enclosed yards to prevent poultry escaping. Poultry yards to be kept free of rats and mice

Roosters should not be kept due to potential noise from crowing

Pigeons (introduced fancy and racing breeds)

20 or under
20+
Number to suit the size of a portable cage

10m
15m
3m

Pigeons allowed to fly free must not be allowed to create a nuisance. Lofts to be kept clean at all times. Cages to be kept free of rats and mice

Obtain information on the proper keeping and training of homing pigeon

Birds (including canary, finch, budgerigar, quail, native pigeons, parrots and the like)

Number to suit the size of a fixed aviary
2 - portable cage

10m


3m

-

-

Sulphur Crested Cockatoo, Little and Long Billed Corella

4 - aviary

10m

Cages and aviaries to be regularly cleaned. Prevent offensive noise caused by the keeping of birds. Cages and aviaries to be kept free of rats and mice

Sulphur Crested Cockatoos, Little and Long Billed Corella are likely to be noisy if kept as single caged birds. Some native birds may be kept without National Parks and Wildlife Service Permits

Rabbit

1

3m

Controlled by the NSW Agriculture Department under the Rural Lands Protection Act, 1989 and Regulations. (see Noxious Animals - Group 2). Regulation limit one recognised domestic breed per residence. Must be kept in a rabbit- proof enclosure

Do not release rabbits into the environment. Discuss immunisation with your vet

Bees

As appropriate in the circumstances

As appropriate in the circumstances

Controlled principally by NSW Agriculture Department under the Apiaries Act 1985. Beehives must be registered with the Department of Agriculture. Complaints regarding bees are referred to the Department of Agriculture for investigation. Council may apply restrictions where a public nuisance exists

Before installing any hive, contact NSW Agriculture and Fisheries Department

Horses and Cattle

1

9m
(greater where directed by Council)

Local Government Act Regulations apply including:-
9m separation from dwellings and certain separation may be required where necessary. Stable floors must be impervious and drained. (Prior approval for erection of a stable may be required - refer Local approvals Policy No 1)

Most properties within the LGA are not suitable for the keeping of these animals

Sheep and Goats

1

9m

Not to create a nuisance. Not to be slaughtered

-

Pigs

1

60m

Local Government Act Regulations apply including:-
60m separation from dwellings and certain other buildings

Most premises within the LGA are not suitable for the keeping of these animals

Aquarium and Pond Fish

As appropriate in the circumstances

As appropriate in the circumstances

Not to create a nuisance. Fish ponds 300mm or more in depth are subject to pool safety requirements

-

Reptiles and Amphibians

As appropriate in the circumstances

As appropriate in the circumstances

Must be adequately contained to prevent escape from the premises

The keeping of snakes is likely to cause concern to neighbours. Various snakes are protected (refer native animals) and/or venomous (refer venomous animals)

Other Animals not specified

As appropriate in the circumstances

As appropriate in the circumstances

Must be appropriate in the circumstances and contact should be made with Council in the first instance.

-

*Certain buildings = a dwelling, shop, office, factory, school, church or public hall unless otherwise regulated by State Law

Group 2 - Uncommon, Protected and Restricted Animals

Type of Animal

Relevant Advice

Native Animals

Strictly protected and must not be kept unless in accordance with the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974. Some exceptions apply including the native budgerigar, zebra finch and sulphur crested cockatoo. Enquiries should be directed to the National Parks and Wildlife Service

Noxious Animals Rabbit, Feral Pig, Dingo (wild dog)

Strictly controlled and must not be kept unless in accordance with the Rural Lands Protection Act 1989 and Regulations. Enquiries should be directed to the NSW Agriculture Deptartment (Moss Vale Rural Lands Protection Board)

Dangerous and Venomous Animals

It is generally not appropriate to keep dangerous or venomous animals in the LGA

Exotic Animals

May be subject of State or Federal Regulations including Quarantine Regulations

© Copyright 2017 Rockdale City Council. All right reserved.