Owning a dog in Palmerston North

Photo shows woman holding small shaggy dog, which is looking directly into the camera. She's looking out at the river and He Ara Kotahi bridge in the background.

Thinking about getting a dog? Here are some of the things you'll need to take into account. 

Being a responsible dog owner

If you own a dog in Palmerston North it is your responsibility to:

  • register your dog
  • microchip your dog and provide us with its microchip details
  • let us know if any of your dog's details change, eg, change of address or ownership, if you desex your dog or if it dies
  • keep your dog under control at all times
  • ensure your dog gets care and attention, and has enough food, water, shelter and exercise
  • ensure your dog doesn't disturb people with repeated barking or howling
  • ensure your dog doesn't hurt, endanger or distress people, animals or protected wildlife
  • ensure your dog doesn't damage or endanger property belonging to someone else
  • comply with the requirements of the Dog Control Act and all regulations and bylaws made under the Act

Dog care and exercise

Failure to provide proper care and attention for your dog is an offence that can carry a prison term of three months or a fine of up to $5,000.

It's also important for your dog's health to keep up to date with vaccinations and worming. If you're not sure when this needs to be done, talk to your vet.

Find a dog park in Palmy

Cleaning up after your dog

When out and about, don't forget to take a bag to pick up your dog's waste. This can be disposed of in any public rubbish bin. Failure to clean up after your dog may result in a $300 fine.

Council provides free poo bags at the entrances to some popular dog walking spots.

Neutering your dog

We encourage you to desex your dog, and offer discounted rates on registration fees for dogs that have been neutered. Desexing also makes your dog cleaner, easier to handle, less likely to roam, more socially acceptable, less aggressive, and less likely to suffer ill health.

Training your dog

Dog obedience training is a great way to spending quality time with your dog. It can also help you comply with the city's responsible dog owner practices.