Dog registration - Frequently asked questions

​What is the cost of dog registration?​

Please see  our animal education and control fees and charges list. For more details, see dog registration fees and requirements.

How can I get a dog registration pack?​

Dog registration packs are mailed to all owners of previously-registered dogs. If you have just got a dog and/or if you haven't received a pack, you can pick one up from Animal Education and Control Team at 217 Ellis St , Frankton or at Council reception in Garden Place, Hamilton - or download our registration form.

The easiest way though is to use our Dogs Online e-services facility to register, renew, pay or change details.

Alternatively, you can call us on 07 838 6632 and ask us to post out a registration pack to you.

Why must I register my dog?

It is a legal requirement that all dogs must be registered. The registration information about your dog goes onto a national register and this helps in the location and identification of owners in the case of wandering, lost or stolen dogs. It also helps keep track of dogs who have changed owners or districts, or who have a history of complaints. 

All dogs registered for the first time have to be microchipped and this greatly strengthens the ability to locate and identify dogs, and to confirm their ownership. 

When does my puppy need to be registered?

A puppy needs to be registered on or before the age of three months. Any dog registered for the first time on or after 1 July 2006 must be implanted with a microchip.

Do I have to microchip my dog?​

Yes. All dogs registered for the first time after 1 July 2006 need to be microchipped within two months of first being registered. There are also microchipping requirements in relation to impounded dogs and dogs which are classified as dangerous or menacing. Find out more about the microchipping requirements here.

Is it compulsory as a dog owner to supply my date of birth? 

Yes it is compulsory. Your date of birth is required to enable you to be distinguished from other people with the same name. Certainty of identification is required in the enforcement of the provisions of the Dog Control Act 1996.

What if I have more than two dogs?

In Hamilton, no more than two dogs over the age of three months can live on individual premises. If you want to keep more than two dogs, you'll need a permit. Find out more about owning more than two dogs here.

When does the registration period start and finish each year?

The registration year is the same across all Councils, running from 1 July to 30 June every year. Registration renewal fees are due by 30 June each year.

When does my dog need to wear its registration tag?

Dogs need to be wearing a collar with a current registration tag at all times. It is important that your dog is wearing its tag so it can be clearly identified.

Do I have to advise Council if my registration details change?

Yes, if you and/or your dog changes address, or if your dog changes ownership, you need to advise Council if your and/or your dog will still be living within Hamilton city and its surrounds. It is an offence (with a fine of $100) if you do not notify us of these changes within 14 days. You can also notify Council in writing. 

However, if the dog is moving into or out of the Hamilton City Council area, notification must be made within six weeks.  

If you are notifying us in writing, you can find out how to contact us here; or emailour Animal Education and Control Team. You can also download a change of address form or change of ownership form and once you have filled the form in, you can return it to us. 

The easiest way though is to use our Dogs Online e-services facility to register, renew, pay or change details.

What happens if I lost my registration tag?

Replacement discs may be obtained from the Hamilton City Council for a minimal fee if the current disc has been lost, stolen, damaged or destroyed. Any dog not wearing a collar having the current registration disc attached will, until proved otherwise, be treated as unregistered.  

Get in touch with us to request a replacement disc - check out our Animal Education and Control Team's contact details and our location here .

What happens if I register my dog late or do not register my dog?

Dog registration renewals that are unpaid at 1 August will incur a 50 per cent penalty fee. Late registrations create additional administrative costs in reminders and postage as well as staff time. The implementation of a penalty encourages dog owners to register on time.

If you do not register your dog any or all of the following may occur:

  • A $300 infringement notice may be issued.
  • We may seize and impound the dog.
  • We may prosecute the dog owner.

Fees incurred are in relation to the seizure of the unregistered dog; sustenance fees apply while it is in our care; and before you can claim your dog, you must register it prior to its release).

See our animal education and control fees and charges list and also dog registration fees and requirements​ for more information. 

​What happens if my dog is classified as dangerous or menacing?

Dogs can be classified as dangerous or menacing if they act in an aggressive manner bite or attack or behave aggressively towards a person or another animal. 

The Hamilton City Council  may classify a dog as 'menacing' if it considers that a dog poses a threat to any person, stock, poultry, domestic animal or protected wildlife because of:

  • any observed or reported behaviour of the dog, or;
  • any characteristics typically associated with the dogs breed or type.

The owner of any dog that has been classified as dangerous or menacing pays 150 per cent of the usual registration fee - see our fees and charges list for details. 

Get more information about dangerous and menacing dogs .

If my dog dies, am I entitled to a refund?

Yes you are. 

If your dog passes away, you need to notify us so we can update our records and you can specifically request a refund calculated against any remaining months left on your dog's fully-paid registration year.

To do this, you can use Dogs Onlineemail  us, write to us or download a Notification of Death Form, fill it in and send it back to us. Find out how to contact us here

It is important that you do this as soon as possible, as the refunds are calculated on the number of full months left in the registration year, from the date we receive your written notification. Refunds are only provided in this circumstance. Refunds are not available if your dog changes ownership or you sign your dog over to the Animal Education and Control Centre. 

The eas​iest way though is to use our Dogs Online e-services facility to register, renew, pay or change details.

Please note, we require a deposit slip/printed record of your bank account details to process your refund, unless you notify us via Dogs Online.

​Do I need to register my dog if it is a guide dog, companion or hearing dog?

You still need to register certified seeing eye or hearing ear dogs and companion/assistance dogs - however there is no charge to register these dogs.  ​​​​​​​​

Page reviewed: 28 Jul 2021 12:26pm