Requirements for animal owners

Number of allowed dogs

The number of dogs you can keep depends on a number of circumstances including the size of your property, appropriate enclosures, supervision available, likelihood for nuisance to neighbours, amenity of the surrounding area and other considerations. Subordinate Local Law No. 1.5 (Keeping of Animals) 2011 outlines these circumstances in detail.

For your convenience the following unofficial summary is provided.

Number of dogs allowed (when registered) within our region:

  • 2 dogs* on a property with an area less than 450m2
  • 4 dogs* on a property with an area between 451m2 and 4,000m2
  • 4 dogs* on a property with an area between 4,001m2 and 40,000m2
  • 5 dogs on a property with an area greater than 40,000m2

Working dogs are considered separately. 

* A dog is over the age of 12 weeks.

How to apply to keep more dogs

To apply for a permit to keep more dogs, please refer to the Animals - Keeping of animals and excess animals application form (for print).

 

Working dogs

For your dog/s to be qualified as a working dog under the Animal Management (Cats & Dogs) Act 2009 you must answer yes to all of the following questions.

1. Are you a primary producer?

A 'primary producer' is a person who's main occupation is a farmer (dairy, grain, cane, fruit, grazier, etc.)

2. Do you live on rural land?

Just being zoned rural land does not qualify you under the new Act. Rural land for the purpose of the legislation means your land is used for grazing stock, or cultivating crops on a commercial basis.

3. Is your dog a working dog?

This means your dog/s is usually kept on rural land (as outlined above) and is kept/owned by a primary producer (as outlined above), or a person engaged or employed by a primary producer, and is used primarily for the purpose of droving, protecting, tending, or working stock and has not been declared a dangerous or menacing dog (prescribed under Animal Management (Cats & Dogs) Regulation 2009).

If you said 'no' to any of the above questions, your dog/s do not qualify as a 'working dog'.

 

Prohibited dog breeds

Council prohibits the keeping of the following dog breeds, including their offspring, cross breeds or types.

  • Pit Bull Terrier
  • Dogo Argentino
  • Fila Brasilerio
  • Japanese Tosa

 

Breeding dogs

The Queensland Government has introduced new laws to promote responsible dog breeding. The legislation came into effect on 26 May 2017 and applies only to dogs born on or after this date.

The laws require all persons giving away, supplying, selling or advertising dogs or puppies to have a supply number that identifies the registered breeder of that dog.

For more information, and forms to register as a dog breeder, visit the Queensland Government Department of Agriculture and Fisheries

 

Visiting dogs

Dogs staying at a property for a period less than seven days where they are not normally kept, may be temporarily permitted if they are currently registered with another council within Australia. Incidents where this may occur include visiting family and friends who bring their dog for the visit, or looking after a dog for a short period of time for a friend or family member. 

To apply for a visiting dog, a letter must be submitted to council with the following details:

  • Name of the person who will be keeping the dog.
  • Address of where the dog will be staying.
  • Details of dog (name, breed, age, colour etc).
  • Owner’s name.
  • Address where dog is coming from.
  • Is the dog registered at this address, currently registered with another council within Australia. Include microchip details of dog.
  • Dates (when the dog is due to arrive and leave).

If council grants permission to keep excess dogs, the property will be inspected at the expiry of the permit to ensure the excess dogs are no longer on the property. 

Dogs that are visiting your property for a period of longer than seven days may do so upon conditions and approval set by council. In this instance a Permit to Keep Excess animals must be applied for. 

This policy applies to any person wishing to keep excess dogs in the Toowoomba City area. An application will not be issued unless the conditions are able to be comfortably met. The term of the Permit may vary from days to years, or until death from natural causes. 

The conditions ordinarily imposed in a permit are:

  1. Applications must be in writing and attached to the approved application form. Comments from neighbours, interested, or possibly affected parties should also be attached.
  2. Applications must be submitted with the appropriate non refundable application fee.
  3. Applications must demonstrate that the likelihood of a nuisance to neighbours is minimal.
  4. Applications must demonstrate that the land where the dogs are to be kept is suitable by providing a suitable exercise area, enclosure and minimal stimulants likely to cause the dogs to create a nuisance.
  5. Permits will only be issued when exceptional circumstances are able to be demonstrated; when a dog needs to be taken care of as a result of the owner being hospitalised or incapacitated. Medical certificates may be required to support any such claim.
  6. A desire to have more than the number of animals allowable under Council’s Local Law, or arriving in the city from another Local Government area with animals in excess of the legal limit, or wishing to keep excess animals for hobby purposes does not qualify as exceptional circumstances.
  7. All applications are animal specific and are not transferable from animal to animal or from one person to another.
  8. A complete description of the dog/s must be provided and include the dog’s name, age, breed, colour, and registration details such as any council registration, canine control council registration, microchip identification.
  9. There are no circumstances that will see a permit issued automatically, even if all criteria appear to have been met.
  10. Any breach of Council’s Local Laws or any complaints received regarding the subject dog/s may render the application or permit null and void.
  11. Persons wishing to take on the responsibility of caring for pets for family or friends over a period greater than seven days, (holidays or similar), must apply for a permit to do so.
  12. An application will not be considered for numbers exceeding two above the legal limit set out under Subordinate Local Law No 1.5 (Keeping of Animals) 2011

If council grants permission to keep excess dogs, the property will be inspected at the expiry of the permit to ensure the excess dogs are no longer on the property.

 

Number of allowed cats

The number of cats you can keep depends on a number of circumstances including the size of your property, appropriate enclosures, supervision available, likelihood for nuisance to neighbours, amenity of the surrounding area and other considerations. Subordinate Local Law No. 1.5 (Keeping of Animals) 2011 outlines these circumstances in detail.

For your convenience the following unofficial summary is provided.

Number of cats allowed within our region:

  • 3 cats* on a property with an area less than 450m2 
  • 4 cats* on a property with an area between 451m2 and 4,000m2
  • 5 cats* on a property with an area more than 4,000m2.

* A cat is over the age of 12 weeks.

To apply for a permit to keep more cats, please refer to the Animals - excess application form.

 

Keeping poultry

For the protection of the poultry and the local environment, we have a number of minimum standards, local laws and owner responsibilities which must be met in keeping poultry.

Chickens

The minimum standards for keeping chickens/hens is: 

  • Less than 10 chickens/hens - no approval required
  • 10-20 chickens/hens - not preferred, permit required
  • More than 20 chickens/hens - not permitted.

Roosters

The number of roosters permitted is based upon the area of your property:

  • Property size less than 4000m2 - nil roosters permitted
  • Property size more than 4000m2 - approval required; 1 - 5 roosters only

To keep a rooster, approval is required on any allotment in a residential area.

Conditions

Approval conditions for keeping poultry include (but are not limited to):

  • The birds are contained within an enclosure
  • The enclosure in which the birds are kept is
    1. thoroughly cleaned at least once each week and
    2. located at the rear of, and behind, any residence situated on the premises.
  • The enclosure in which the bird is kept is not located within a radius of 10 m of
    1. a residence on an adjoining premises or
    2. a place used for the manufacture, preparation or storage of food intended for human consumption other than a domestic kitchen.
  • The enclosure in which the birds are kept is not located less than 2 m from the side and rear boundaries of the premises.
  • Requests to keep excess animals are required in writing on approved Council application forms and appropriate application fees must be paid upon lodgement of the application for approval.

Please contact us for more information and details on application forms and fees related to keeping poultry.

Local laws exist to help support the welfare of animals and the amenity of our neighborhoods.

The following criteria are considered by Council staff when reviewing the keeping of animals. For more detailed information, refer to Local Law Register - Subordinate Local Law No. 2 (Animal Management) 2011, pages 14 to 20.

Criteria

  1. Whether the premises on which the animals are to be kept is appropriately sized.
  2. Whether a residence exists on the premises.
  3. Whether a proper enclosure is maintained on the premises. That this is properly maintained in a clean and sanitary condition and waste water from enclosures are drained appropriately.
  4. Whether someone will be resident on the premises on which the animals are to be kept.
  5. Whether the animals will be properly supervised.
  6. Whether excreta, food scraps, dead animals and any other material that may be offensive is managed appropriately.
  7. That nuisance is not caused by emissions such as aerosols, fumes, light, odour, particles or smoke.
  8. If the animal requires a 'Prescribed Permanent Identification Device' (PPID or microchip), whether this has been complied with. Additionally, ensure that the animal is adequately identified so that the owner’s name, address and telephone number are readily ascertainable.
  9. Whether the applicant is a suitable person to hold the approval.
  10. Whether the grant of the approval for the prescribed activity on the premises is likely to:
  11. Cause nuisance, inconvenience or annoyance to occupiers of adjoining land; or
  12. Affect the amenity of the surrounding area; or
  13. Have a deleterious effect on the local environment or cause pollution or other environmental damage.
  14. If the application relates to the keeping of an animal or animals on multi-residential premises:
  15. Whether the applicant is entitled to make use of a common area; and
  16. Whether the applicant has exclusive possession and control of the whole or a part of the common area for the purpose of keeping the animal/s; and
  17. Whether the applicant has the written permission of the person or body which manages or controls the common area to use the common area, or a part of the common area, for the purpose of keeping the animal/s.
  18. Where the animals are to be kept on premises other than multi-residential premises and the applicant is not the owner of the premises — whether the applicant has the written permission of the owner of the premises to keep the animal or animals on the premises.
  19. That minimum standards for the keeping of particular species or breed are met. Eg: Schedule 5 of Subordinate Local Law No. 2 (Animal Management) 2011.
  20. History of any related and substantiated complaints.
  21. Change in status in the animal/s. Including but not limited to  animals being sold, given away, relocated or deceased. That Council has been advised. That animals approved in previous applications are not being replaced with another animals without approval. Ie: Applications are not transferable to any other animals, properties or any other person.
  22. That the term of any approval is appropriate.
  23. Whether the applicant has been refused a similar type of approval by other authorities.
  24. If the application relates to the keeping of dogs:
  25. Whether the animals identified in the application are registered with Council.
  26. If the application relates to the keeping of cats:
  27. Whether the cats have been desexed; and
  28. Whether the cats have been fitted with an approved microchip.

Related laws

Within Council's Local Law Register - Subordinate Local Law No. 2 (Animal Management) 2011 you will find:

Schedule 1 - Prohibition on keeping animals

(Page 8, Subordinate Local Law No. 2)

This lists what animals are prohibited in certain circumstances. Eg:

Dog
(a) More than 2 dogs over the age of 12 weeks on premises or an allotment with an area less than 450m2.
(b) More than 4 dogs over the age of 12 weeks on premises or an allotment with an area more than 451m2 but less than 4,000m2.
(c) More than 4 dogs over the age of 12 weeks on premises or an allotment with an area more than 4,001m2 but less than 40,000m2.
(d) More than 5 dogs over the age of 12 weeks on premises or an allotment with an area more than 40,000m2
(e) The prohibition in paragraph (c) and (d) does not apply to working dogs.
(f) Any of the following breeds, and a cross-breed of any of the following breeds, anywhere in the local government area—American pit bull terrier or pit bull terrier; dogo Argentino; fila Brasileiro; Japanese tosa; Perro de Presa Canario or Presa Canario.

Cat
(a) More than 3 cats over the age of 12 weeks on premises or an allotment with an area less than 450m2.
(b) More than 4 cats over the age of 12 weeks on premises or an allotment with an area more than 451m2 but less than 4,000m2.
(c) More than 5 cats over the age of 12 weeks on premises or an allotment with an area more than 4,000m2.

Horse, donkey, camel or other animal of a similar size or type and cow, bull or other animal of a similar size or type
(a) An animal identified in this category on an allotment with an area less than 4,000m2.
(b) A density of animals identified in this category on an allotment that is greater than 1 animal per 4,000m2.

Sheep, goat, alpaca, llama or other animal of a similar size or type
(a) An animal identified in this category on an allotment which is in a residential area and has an area less than 4,000m2.
(b) An animal identified in this category on an allotment which is in a residential area if the density of animals is greater than 1 animal per 4,000m2.

Rooster
(a) A rooster on an allotment in a residential area less than 4,000m².
(b) More than 5 roosters on an allotment in a residential area greater than 4,000m².

Poultry other than a rooster
21 or more poultry (other than a rooster) on an allotment in a residential area.

Deer
A deer on an allotment in a residential area.

Pig, including a miniature pig, on—
(a) an allotment in a residential area; or
(b) an allotment in a commercial, industrial or light industrial zoned area in the planning scheme of the local government with an area less than 4,000m2.

Duck
(a) A duck on an allotment which is in a residential area and has an area less than 2,000m2.
(b) More than 5 ducks on an allotment in a residential area greater than 2,000m².

Goose
A goose on an allotment in a residential area.

Guineafowl, ostrich, emu, turkey and peacock
A bird identified in this category on an allotment in a residential area.

Bees
(a) A hive on an allotment less than 400m2 in a residential area.
(b) More than 2 hives on an allotment less than 1,000m2 in a residential area.
(c) More than 5 hives on an allotment less than 2,000m2 in a residential area.
(d) More than 10 hives on an allotment less than 4,000m2 in a residential area.

Racing pigeons
(a) Racing pigeons on an allotment which is in a residential area and has an area less than 1,000m2.
(b) More than 30 racing pigeons on an allotment in a residential area greater than 1,000m².

Schedule 2 - Requirement for approval to keep animal 

(Page 11, Subordinate Local Law No. 2)

This lists circumstances in which keeping of animals requires approval. If required, application to keep these animals can be made via:

Eg:

Dog
(a) More than 1 dog over the age of 12 weeks on premises or an allotment with an area less than 450m2.
(b) More than 2 dogs over the age of 12 weeks on premises or an allotment with an area more than 450m2 but less than 4,000m2.
(c) More than 3 dogs over the age of 12 weeks on premises or an allotment with an area more than 4,000m2 but less than 40,000m2.
(d) More than 4 dogs over the age of 12 weeks on premises or an allotment with an area more than 40,000m2.
(e) The requirement for an approval in paragraphs (c) and (d) does not apply to working dogs.

Cat
(a) More than 2 cats over the age of 12 weeks on premises or an allotment with an area less than 450m2.
(b) More than 3 cats over the age of 12 weeks on premises or an allotment with an area more than 450m2 but less than 4,000m2.
(c) More than 3 cats over the age of 12 weeks on premises or an allotment with an area more than 4,000m2.

Rooster
1 or more roosters on an allotment in a residential area.

Poultry other than a rooster
More than 10 poultry (other than a rooster) on an allotment in a residential area

Pig
A pig on an allotment with an area of 4,000m2 or more unless—
(a) the keeping of the pig on the allotment is authorised by a development approval; or
(b) the allotment is rural land and the responsible person for the pig is a primary producer.

Cockatoo, galah or other bird of a similar size or type
More than 6 birds identified in this item 6 on an allotment in a residential area.

Budgerigar, canary or other bird of a similar size or type
More than 30 birds identified in this item 7 on an allotment in a residential area.

Racing pigeons More than 10 racing pigeons on an allotment which—
(a) is in a residential area; and
(b) has an area of more than 1,000m2.

Related forms

Animals - Keeping of animals and excess animals application form (for print)

Back to top