Non-paying dog owners targeted

Dog registration fees cover a range of services as well as support the cost of keeping Aucklanders safe from dog-related nuisance and harm.

While the majority have paid, Auckland Council is calling on dog owners who haven’t renewed their dog registration to do so rather than break the law and risk a hefty fine.

Councillor Wayne Walker, Auckland Council’s Regulatory Committee Deputy Chair, says dog owners are legally required to register their dog with their local council and renew the registration each year by 1 August.

During July and August, almost 70,000 dog owners did the right thing, with well over a third of these opting to renew and pay online.

However around 30,000 known dogs are yet to be registered.

“Auckland Council makes every effort to remind dog owners to renew registration, and we’re making it easier to renew each year” says Walker.

Yet he adds that there is an element of the dog-owning community that thinks they can get away with not registering their dogs.

Walker says that Auckland Council wants dogs to be a positive part of life in Auckland and to ensure that people to comply with the law.

“Dog registration fees cover services such as animal shelters for lost and stray dogs, rehoming dogs, and the cost of keeping Aucklanders safe from dog-related nuisance and harm. Having your dog registered and micro-chipped is the best way of ensuring we can return your dog to you if it does get lost,” says Walker.

A $300 fine applies if a dog is found to be unregistered. Each year Auckland Council issues around 2,000 infringement fines for dog owners having an unregistered dog.

Auckland Council Animal Management Manager Tracey Moore says that from September staff will be contacting owners of registered dogs that haven’t been renewed, as well as looking out for dogs that have never been registered.

“There are responsibilities that come with dog ownership but, unfortunately, these aren’t always met. At the moment around 70% of the dogs impounded in Auckland each year haven’t been registered or de-sexed,” says Moore.

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