On this page:
You can re-register your dog, register new dogs and pay dog impoundment fees online. Visit this page: Online payments
The Council determines fees and charges relating to dogs including registration, dog control infringements and pound fees. Penalties for not registering your dog range from a fine, prosecution – or even seizure of the dog.
Dog registration application forms are available from the Council’s Invercargill and Bluff Offices, or you can contact the Customer Services Department to arrange for an application form to be sent to you. A completed application, with the total registration payment, must be taken into the Council by the person applying to be the registered dog owner.
Council staff will process your application and, if successful, the dog owner will be issued with a dog licence and a dog registration tag (with a unique identification number). The tag should be secured on to the dog’s collar as soon as practicable. Once your dog has been registered, the Council will invoice you annually for the renewal of the dog licence, which must be paid by the due date.
Change of details, ownership or circumstances
It is the dog owner’s responsibility to notify the Council (in writing and including the writer’s signature) of any changes to ownership details, for example name, contact phone numbers, change of address etc. Up-to-date information helps the Council’s Animal Control Department in reuniting lost or stray dogs with their owners, to notify owners if a dog has been found injured or dead, to remind owners when dog registration is due, etc. To check or update your records email the Council’s Customer Services Department or phone (03) 211 1777 .
ALL dog owners must apply for a dog registration if they have an existing unregistered dog or if they get a new dog. Dog owners must be 16 years or older to legally own a dog. Dogs must also be registered before they reach three months of age and/or if you have had a dog in your possession for more than three days.
Registration fees and categories
1 Discounted fee
About 80% of dogs in the Invercargill district fall into this category and qualify for a reduced registration fee.
2 Standard registration
There are about 1000 dogs in the Invercargill district in this category. A standard fee applies to any owner, who for whatever reason, has failed to meet the requirements for a discounted fee. For example the dog owners might have received an infringement notice in the last two years; or in the previous year failed to register their dogs within the deadline and the “amnesty period”; or had a dog impounded in the previous two years; or had been successfully prosecuted for a dog-related offence in the past two years. Owners can apply for their standard registration status to be reviewed after two years if there has been no breach of the provisions and policies.
3 Working dogs
A working dog is defined as being kept solely or principally for the purposes of herding or driving stock.
4 Guide dogs and service dogs
It is the Council’s practice not to charge a fee for “seeing eye” dogs, “hearing” dogs and other guide and companion animals. To qualify, such dogs must be certified with the appropriate authority or organisation, for example the Guide Dog Foundation. Service dogs include Customs and Police dogs, search and rescue dogs and any other category of dog that the Council may deem appropriate for this status.
5 Multiple dog fee, multiple licence
Multiple dog fee: Where more than five dogs are owned by any owner, that owner may have their total dog fees capped if the Council is satisfied that all of the Dog Control Act 1996 and Council requirements have been met.
Multiple licence: A special licence is required if a person wishes to keep more than two dogs on a property, regardless of the number of dog owners. Applications are considered on a case-by-case basis and the Council may impose conditions or restrictions.
Microchipping is a simple procedure in which a microchip about the size of a grain of rice is inserted into the dog’s scruff. Under the Dog Control Act 1996, all dogs registered for the first time on or after July 1, 2006 and all dogs classified on or after December 1, 2003, must be microchipped. A microchip contains a number that belongs only to your dog, enabling secure and reliable life-long identification. If a microchipped dog gets lost and picked up by a dog control officer, or injured and taken to a vet, the microchip can be scanned and Council can then check its number on the national dog database to enable a quick reunion with its owner. The Animal Services team (03) 211 1777 can assist with this, or contact your local vet.
Dog pound and fees
If your dog has been impounded, please contact Animal Services on (03) 211 1777 to arrange a time to have your dog released to you. Releasing of dogs is by appointment only. There is a fee involved in releasing your dog (see above for a link to the latest dog-related fees). Note that if your dog is unregistered then, by law, it has to be registered before it can be released to you.
A list of places where dogs are not permitted can be found in the Dog Control Bylaw, which can be found on our Bylaws page. Unless otherwise stated, dogs are also not permitted at events organized by the Council. ‘No dog’ zones do not apply to guide dogs for the blind, hearing ear dogs, police dogs, or dogs being used by security guards.
Dog-owners who notify the Council’s Animal Services team if their dog has been desexed may qualify for a reduced dog registration fee.
There are two ways to let Council know. Either you can bring us a certificate from your vet to show that the dog has been desexed or you can take a form to your vet and ask them to stamp it for you.
There’s a link below to the Dog Desexing Form or forms can be picked up at the Help Desk of the Civic Administration Building at 101 Esk Street.
Dogs in parks and reserves: scooping the poop
When a dog fouls in public the person controlling the dog is responsible for the immediate removal of the faeces. Dog owners are advised to keep a plastic bag handy; free “Scoop the Poop bags” are available from the Queens Park Office during office hours.
What if my dog passes away?
If your dog passes away please let us know, and we can refund the remaining full months of your dog registration.
Please note: Refunds are calculated based on the number of full months remaining in the registration year, counted from the date we receive your request, not from the date your dog passed away.
To update our records that your dog has died, we need:
- your dog’s name and date of death.
- your dog’s registration number or tag number.
- your bank account number, including proof of bank account ownership.
What is acceptable proof of a bank account
Any of the following can be provided and it must include both the bank account name and number, and show your bank’s logo.
- Screenshot from internet banking
- Bank deposit slip (although cheques are no longer accepted the pre-printed deposit slips are still valid forms of verification for those that have them)
- Copy of the top part of bank statement
- Printout of bank account from an ATM machine (provided it shows the bank account name and number)
- Letter from your bank (some banks can provide this instantly from the internet banking app)
Dog-related resources and information
This booklet includes the Responsible Dog Owner application form and information about Responsible Dog Owners Status, dog ownership, registration, dog control, microchipping, menacing and dangerous dogs, restricted breeds, barking dogs, exercise, prohibited areas (no dogs allowed), controlled areas (where dogs must be on a lead), controlled areas (where dogs can be exercised off the lead), maps, parks where dogs can be exercised off the lead, and how to avoid being the victim of a dog attack.
NOTE: Dogs with a known infectious disease are not allowed in public places. This is a serious offence and is in breach of the Dog Control Act.
Forms and Documents
- Responsible Owner Application Form [PDF]
- Animal Services fees and charges, which can be found on our Fees and Charges page
- Dog Control Policy, which can be found on our Policies page
- Dog Control Bylaw, which can be found on our Bylaws page
Dog Control Annual Reports:
- Dog Control Annual Report 2020-2021
- Dog Control Annual Report 2019-2020
- Dog Control Annual Report 2018-2019
- Dog Control Annual Report 2017-2018
- Dog Control Annual Report 2016-2017
- Dog Control Annual Report 2015-2016
- Dog Control Annual Report 2014-2015