A dog is menacing if it:
- has displayed unreasonable aggression towards a person or animal (other than vermin), or
- has, without provocation, attacked a person or animal (other than vermin) but without causing serious injury or death.
A dog is dangerous if it:
- has, without provocation, attacked or killed a person or animal (other than vermin),
- has, without provocation, repeatedly threatened to attack or repeatedly chased a person or animal (other than vermin),
- is kept or used for the purposes of hunting.
An authorised officer of Council may declare a dog to be a menacing or dangerous dog if they are satisfied that:
- the dog is menacing or dangerous, or
- the dog has been declared a menacing or dangerous dog under a law of another State or a Territory that corresponds with this Act.
- the dog is of a menacing breed or kind of dog (or a cross-breed of a menacing breed or kind of dog)
If Council declares a dog to be a dangerous or menacing dog, strict conditions must be complied with. Strict penalties apply for the breach of any of the conditions.
To notify us of a nuisance, menacing or dangerous dog please call 4221 6111.
Find out more about dangerous dogs
The Companion Animals Act 1998 states that a dog attack has occurred if “a dog rushes at, attacks, bites, harasses or chases any person or animal (other than vermin), whether or not any injury is caused to the person or animal”.
If someone is in immediate danger call Triple Zero (000) to notify police as soon as possible.
If the offending dog is still at large and poses a risk to the public or other animals; please contact Council on 4221 6111.
If you or your pet has been a victim of a dog attack
If you believe that you or your pet has been a victim of a dog attack, contact us or your local police as soon as possible and complete a dog attack form. If our rangers proceed with legal action against a dog owner you must, if required, be prepared to attend court and give evidence (should the matter proceed to that stage).
If your pet is alleged to have been involved in a dog attack
If you have been advised by Council that your dog has allegedly been involved in a dog attack, Council staff will conduct an investigation to determine the facts of the matter. The investigation requires staff to obtain a statement from you, the victim and any witnesses describing the alleged attack.
Taking into account the nature, seriousness and circumstances of the attack, our rangers may consider the option of a dangerous dog declaration. This option can be considered if serious attacks have taken place or if there is a potential for the dog to attack again.
The Companion Animals Act 1998 sets out the control requirements concerning restricted breed dogs. There have been changes to the legislation that have increased the control requirements and penalties relating to restricted breeds.
The following dogs are restricted breeds under the Companion Animals Act 1998 No 87:
- American Pitbull Terrier or Pit Bull Terrier
- Japanese Tosa
- Dogo Argentino
- Fila Brasileiro
- Perro de Presa Canario or Presa Canario
- Any other dog of a breed, kind or description whose importation into Australia is prohibited by or under the Customs Act 1901
- Any dog declared by an authorised officer of a council under Division 6 of this Part to be a restricted dog
- Any other dog of a breed, kind or description prescribed by the regulations for the purposes of this section
If we believe that a dog is a breed, a cross-breed or of a kind listed as a restricted breed, we may give notice to the owner of the dog of our intention to declare the dog restricted.