Dogs, the Law and you
Dog Exercise Areas in Mosman Park
Control of Dogs
Barking Dogs – Nuisance
Limitation on the number of dogs
Restricted Dog Breeds
Impounding of your Dog
Meeting with Dog Owners - 24 October 2017
Dog ownership in Mosman Park is controlled by various pieces of legislation and Town policies.
The Dog Act 1976 and the Dog Act 1976 Regulations control all aspects relating to Dogs in WA, and these prescribe the penalties for breaking the rules. This is a State Legislation that Councils are tasked to enforce. The Town also has a Dog Local Law 2012 that provides additional rules as well as Policy 1.3.4 Dog Control and Policy 1.3.7 Dogs in Public Places. The most significant rule to note within the Local Law is in relation to dealing with dog excrement.
The Town’s Policy 1.3.4 – Dog Control, outlines the Council’s position on unpaid infringements and Policy 1.3.7 – Dogs in Public Places determines the on and off lead areas in Mosman Park. This Policy has informed the Town of Mosman Park's Dog Exercise Map, while the brochure gives a brief overview of how dogs are managed in the Town.
Together, these laws determine what constitutes responsible dog ownership and failure to comply with any of the specified rules constitutes an offence. The legislation prescribes a penalty for each offence. A dog owner can be infringed simultaneously for every rule that has been breached at the same time. Further details on the State rules can be obtained from the State’s fact sheet entitled Laws for Dog Owners, and further clarification can be obtained by contacting the Department of Local Government and Communities by calling 6551 8700.
The Town’s Policy 1.3.7 – Dogs in Public Places, determines the dog exercise areas as follows:
The following are limited access dog exercise areas. These areas cannot be used for dog exercise if the area is being used for sporting or other activities:
The following are areas where dogs are prohibited at all times:
At all times dogs are required to be restrained on a leash in all areas not identified off lead areas or prohibited areas. This includes:
• All carparks and
• Any pathway
For a map that shows the areas for dog exercise areas in the Town please click here
For a short overview of the above information, please consult the Town’s dog brochure
It is a requirement of the Western Australian Dog Act 1976 that all dogs over the age of three (3) months are registered. Dogs can be registered at the Town’s Administration Centre. On registration, a current registration tag will be issued. The law requires that this tag is worn by the dog at all times when in a public place and it is an offence to allow a dog to be in a public place without wearing the tag. The cost of registration varies between sterilised and unsterilised animals, and the options for registration are one or three years or a lifetime registration as follows:
1 YEAR 3 YEARS LIFETIME
Unsterilised $50.00 $120.00 $250.00
Sterilised $20.00 $42.50 $100.00
Eligible Pensioners are eligible for a 50% discount to the applicable fee but must provide a current Pensioner Concession Card, State Pensioner Concession Card, Veteran’s Pensioner Card (not a Veteran's Health Card) or a Senior’s Card together with a Commonwealth Senior’s Health Card as proof of eligibility. Except for the Lifetime registrations, all registrations are valid to 31 October of the relevant year. It is the dog owner’s responsibility to ensure that the dog registration remains valid. Proof of sterilisation is required on registration and can be in the form of a Veterinary Surgeon’s Certificate or if a Ranger or the Shenton Park Dog Refuge (if applicable) can certify that they have viewed the tattoo on the animal's ear. The registration remains valid as long as the dog remains within the State of Western Australia.
When a dog is sold, re-homed, lost/stolen or deceased or moves to another house with its family outside of the Town of Mosman Park, it is the registered owner's responsibility to advise the Town of the change in the dog’s situation within 28 days of the change using this form which can be submitted by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or posted to P.O. Box 3, Mosman Park, WA, 6912.
Where a change in residence or status occurs, the pet owner must contact their relevant Microchip Data Base Company within 7 days to update the animal’s and where applicable, the new owner's details so that the information remains accurate and up to date.
To download a new Registration Form, please click here
All dog registrations must be made in person at the Town of Mosman Park Administration Centre, on Memorial Drive, Mosman Park (between Palmerston Street and Bay View Terrace) during office hours - Monday to Thursday 8.30am to 4.30pm. If you need advice over the phone, please call 9384 1633.
Dog Registration Refund if Registered Dog before Sterilised
Under the Dog Amendment Regulations 2017 (amendments to Dog Regulations 2013), refunds are available to dog owners who have registered their dogs before they were sterilised. To apply for a refund, please complete the ‘Dog Registration Refund Request Form’ by clicking here for the form and submitting the completed form together with proof of sterilisation to the Town’s Administration Centre.
State Legislation requires that all dogs are micro-chipped and that the micro-chip number provided upon registration of the dog.
Apart from this being a legal requirement for all dogs, micro-chipping of pet animals is a safe and effective method of ensuring that the animals can be reunited with their owners if lost.
Micro-chipping is a quick and painless procedure that has the following benefits:
• The microchip cannot fall out
• The microchip will remain “active” for the life of the animal
• The procedure only takes a few seconds; and
• Your pet can be identified immediately.
As part of the microchipping process the details of the animal are registered with one of the approved microchip database companies listed below:
• Royal Agricultural Society of NSW (ABN 69 793 644 351), trading as “Australasian Animal Registry” Ph: 02 9704 1450;
• Central Animal Records (Aust) Pty Ltd Ph: 03 9706 3187;
• PetBase Pty Ltd, trading as “Petsafe” Ph: 02 8850 6800;
• HomeSafeID Ph: 1300 537 140;
• The Lost Dogs Home Inc., trading as “National Pet Register” Ph: 1300 734 738 (merged with Central Animal Records Australia);
• OzChase Greyhound Racing System;
• Global Microchip Registry Pty Ltd, trading as “Global Micro Animal Registry”.
The Dog Act 1976 specifies that all dog owners have adequate control over their dogs at all times while in a public place.
This means that dogs must be on a lead in all areas except in those areas identified as off-lead areas. Allowing a dog off the lead in an area that is not an off-lead area is an offence. Under the Dog Regulations, a dog lead from the base of the neck to the end must not be longer than 2 meters. Under the legislation, the Local Government has the power to seize a dog in a public space that is not adequately controlled.
The State Legislation defines what constitutes a dog attack, the process to investigate the attack and the penalties that can be imposed on the owner of the dog that has attacked. Unfortunately, the Town has witnessed many dog attacks on dogs and people over the years. Details about dog attacks that occurred in 2017 are here and 2018 are available for viewing.
The laws relating to an alleged dog nuisance are prescribed by State Legislation, and Local Authorities are bound to follow that process. The legislation outlines what constitutes a nuisance and recognises that a dog that constantly barks can be disruptive and erode their quality of life for those affected – often neighbours. It therefore provides the steps that need to be followed in such situations. Most aggrieved parties want 'immediate action'. The reality is that dog nuisance complaints are difficult to resolve and the process is usually complex and lengthy for a number of reasons, which may include whether the barking is a nuisance or not is subjective, with many different interpretations as to what is a nuisance. The degree of annoyance, therefore, varies with the location of the dog, and the tolerance of the complainant.
• It is extremely difficult to collect reliable and permanent evidence of the frequency, and loudness of a dog's barking.
• A barking complaint may in some cases be only one aspect of a dispute between neighbours.
In order to progress with a barking complaint, the standard of evidence from the complaints has to be of a high level and takes time to gather. This is complicated by the fact that the dog’s owners are seldom bothered by their barking, and are often unaware that it is causing a nuisance to others. Some dog owners also have difficulty in believing that their dog barks excessively. This is usually because the dog barks when the owners are out, and when they return home the dog stops barking or decreases its barking to a more acceptable level.
A good starting point to resolve the issues is for the aggrieved party to approach the dog owner as soon as the barking becomes a nuisance. A courteous, informative and neighbourly approach is essential to create the opportunities for both parties to work together to solve the problem.
Where an aggrieved party feels that they are unable to approach the neighbour directly, a polite letter that states the effects the barking is having is a good approach. The letter should not be anonymous, as this is likely to lead to bad feelings, and cause a breakdown in communications. It is also advisable that all correspondence is retained for future reference and evidential purposes.
Where these steps have been taken and there is no improvement in the situation after a reasonable time, it is possible to advise the Town of your concerns in writing, substantiating all allegations.
Once the allegation has been reviewed the Town will issue a Form 7 which must be filled out and signed prior to a “Barking Diary” with a request to collect the necessary evidence. In the first instance, these diaries are for a period of 14 days and need to be completed as accurately as possible. Once completed, the diaries must be forwarded within 14 days to the Town to enable Ranger Services to investigate the complaint. To download a "Barking Diary" that you can use to record nuisance barking, click here
Click here to view the Dog Act 1976 to see what constitutes a nuisance. Refer to Division 4 — Control of nuisance, page 80.
The Town of Mosman Park Local Law Relating to Dogs allows you to keep no more than two dogs over the age of three (3) months.
Households must apply for permission to keep more than two (2) dogs and need to provide justification by sending an application to the Town outlining the reasons why they wish to keep more than the required number of dogs. A fee of $250.00 + GST applies to the application which is non-refundable should the application be rejected. To begin your application, please contact the Town’s Ranger Services in the first instance on 9384 1633.
The Local Law requires that the dog owner/s, or person/s in control of the dog are responsible for the removal of excrement from any street or public place, as well as private property where the property owner has not provided consent to the dog excrement.
Please be aware of your responsibilities as a dog owner and carry a plastic bag or pooper scooper and note that it is an offence not to clean up after the dog. Bags are located at parks around the Town. Please be considerate. While cleaning up is not a pleasant task, most owners would agree it is preferable to banning dogs from our parks.
The State legislation defines restricted dog breeds and specifies that similar provisions as those that apply to dogs that have been declared dangerous apply to restricted dog breeds. These measures include adequate identification of the dogs and properties where they are kept, stringent fencing requirements, muzzling and restraining at all times in public and age restrictions for owners and handlers. The legislation requires the Local Government to conduct annual inspections to ensure that the premises where the dangerous/declared dog resides complies.
As a responsible dog owner, you are required to ensure that your property is appropriately fenced so that your dog cannot wander off your property. An unsupervised wandering dog is at risk of being injured by cars or being part of a dog attack. If your dog is picked up by a Town Ranger the Town will in the first instance attempt to find the owner and reunite the dog with its owner. The chance of being reunited increases if the dog is wearing the registration tag and is micro-chipped. A “contact tag” on the collar is also helpful but is not a substitute for the registration tag or microchip. Please ensure the Town has your most up to date contact information including an emergency contact person and their contact details by completing the Town's online 'Update of Animal Ownership Details Form.' To obtain this form, please click here. If no information about the ownership of the dog can be found, the Town will impound the dog and a fee applies to collect the dog from the dog pound. The Town takes any impounded dogs to the “Dog Refuge Home Shenton Park” located at 30 Lemnos Street, Shenton Park – Telephone 9381 8166.
The Dog Law 1976 and its regulations provide the Local Government with the power to enforce its rules. This includes the authority to have a dog destroyed, to require the name, address and date of birth of the person that the dog is with to be provided at the time the offence occurred, enforcement processes and modified penalties. A moratorium on issuing infringements for all dog-related offences, except for offences involving dog attacks, has been in place since November 2017.
Many attendees have requested a copy of the notes taken at the meeting with dog owners held on 24 October 2017. Those notes are available here.
Following the meeting, the Town received 18 submissions that were provided in response to the following three questions:
1) What aspects of dog Management in TOMP are done well? Click here for details
2) What suggestions do you have for how things might be improved? Click here for details
3) Any other questions? Click here for details
The submissions have been summarised by topic. The Town also received 21 further comments since the meeting of 24 October 2017 and a summary of those comments is available here. The Town is currently working through all of submissions which will inform our current review of Policy 1.3.7. The focus of this process will be to ensure that the allocation of resources is balanced so that it is fair to all in our community - dog owners and non-dog owners alike. The reviewed Policy is expected to be presented to Council during the March 2018 cycle of Council meetings to enable further public consultation and discussion before the Policy can be adopted. Until the revised Policy is adopted, the above provisions for on-lead and off-lead areas, and the areas where dogs are absolutely prohibited, remain unchanged.