Local Regulations and Licences

Dog registration

Dogs need to be registered each year. If you have a new puppy, it must be registered before it’s three months old.

Who can register a dog

Each dog can only have one registered owner, and you need to be 16 or over. The dog should be registered at the address that it spends the most time at. Dogs moving into town will get free registration if you can provide proof of current registration from another council.

Once your dog is registered you’ll get an annual reminder sent to your last known address. If you move house, you need to let us know.

How to register a dog

The annual registration period is 1 July-30 June. You can only keep one unspayed female dog on your property, and if you want to keep more than two dogs you’ll need to talk to your neighbours and apply for Council permission. You’ll receive a dog registration renewal form early in June each year. If you haven’t received it, please contact us.

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.

The easiest way to register your dog is online. You can also visit our Customer Service Centre or call us on 06 356 8199 to register by phone.

Dog registration costs

We charge a fixed fee to cover the cost of registering your dog, discounted if you pay on time.

You may be charged more if we need to do an inspection.

You can keep your dog registration costs down by:

  • paying your registration fees before 1 August
  • desexing and microchipping your dog
  • being a preferred owner

Pay your dog rego

Dog registration should not be paid until application to register forms are sent out to owners. This is to ensure you are paying the correct fee. The applications are sent out in the first week of June each year.

We charge a surcharge of 1.3% per transaction to cover our costs in providing this service. Payments made after 10pm will be processed the next working day.

Pay by internet banking

To pay by internet banking, make your payment to Westpac account 03-0726-0330770-00

Make sure you provide the correct details below so your payment can be identified:

  • Particulars: dog ID number
  • Analysis code: "DogRego"
  • Reference: owner ID number
  • For payments from overseas bank accounts, the swift code is WPACNZ2W

Other payment options

You can pay your dog registration in person or by mail. We can’t accept credit card payments over the counter at our Customer Service Centre or by phone.

Fines for unregistered dogs

It’s an offence to have an unregistered dog and all dogs must wear a current registration tag so they can be identified. If your dog is found without the correct registration tag, it will be considered unregistered and could be impounded. The fine for unregistered dogs is $300.

What dog registration pays for

Your dog registration pays for the Council to monitor and enforce the Dog Control Act 1996 and ensure compliance with local dog control bylaws and policies. Our Animal Control team investigate and respond to all reported dog complaints and incidents.

Dog registration pays for:

  • promoting better care and control of Palmerston North's 8,000 dogs
  • promoting community safety
  • encouraging responsible dog ownership
  • protecting dog owner's rights to own a dog by dealing with dog related problems
  • providing dog owners with education on dealing with dog related problems
  • dealing with aggressive and roaming dogs
  • dealing with irresponsible owners
  • patrolling public areas
  • running the preferred owner scheme for responsible dog owners
  • responding to dog complaints and animal nuisances
  • maintaining national dog database records
  • maintaining the dog pound – all impounded dogs are given food, water, shelter and exercise

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