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Dog OwnersTe hunga nāna te kurī

Owning a dog is a big responsibility. This page will provide information on what is required by law and simple tips for keeping your dog healthy.

Dog OwnerDog owner responsibilities

Owning a dog is a big responsibility and the law sets out things you must do. These include:

  • Registering your dog by the age of three months then every year after that
  • Making sure your dog has everything to keep it healthy, including proper shelter, clean water and food
  • Accepting legal responsibility for dogs you are in charge of
  • Ensuring your dog does not threaten or injure other dogs, people, stock, poultry, domestic pets or protected wildlife.
  • Keeping your dog under control at all times
  • Advising council, in writing, within 14 days if your dog dies or is moved to another address

No more than two dogs over three months of age may be kept on an urban residential property in Hastings without a permit. For the forms for registration, keeping more than two dogs, applying for responsible owner accreditation, and dog registration refund (in the case of a dog's death) see the Dog Registration page.

Simple tips for keeping your dog healthy

  • Give your dog enough food and plenty of clean, fresh water
  • Give your dog plenty of exercise
  • Make sure your dog has shade and shelter
  • Include your dog in your family life

Dog education

Check out these leaflets below for helpful tips for educating your dogs.

Dog Control officers

A Dog Control officer can enter a private property if they have good cause to suspect an offence is being committed. The officer can bring other people onto the property for assistance.

A Dog Control officer may remove a dog from a property if:

  • It is left without food or water
  • A court orders it be removed
  • The dog has no current registration
  • No one is home and the dog is not confined and can freely leave the property
  • The dog has attacked a person, stock, poultry, animal or protected wildlife, rushed at a vehicle in a public place, or rushed or startled a person or animal in a public place. In these situations, the dog owner is likely to be prosecuted. 
  • The dog owner has failed to comply with the requirements of a dangerous or menacing classification

Change of dog ownership and/or address details

If the ownership of a dog has changed or you and your dog move house, written notification must be sent to the Hastings District Council within 14 days. The details of the new owner's address and the address where the dog will be kept are required. To update ownership details (or change of address) please complete the online form:

Change of dog ownership details form


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