Our favourite pets are dogs and cats.

Restricted breed dogs

New laws came into effect from 30 September 2011 – more information below.

Dog attacks

If you or your dog is attacked, or you are rushed, by another dog, contact Local Laws immediately – phone  9278 4444.

The City of Boroondara recognises the high risk of animal management and is committed to providing the best service possible.

We have officers on call 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to investigate all dog attacks.

Record as much information as possible about the incident. Take photos of any injuries, make notes about the incident. Council may also require reports from your vet and doctor.

In the case of a dog attack, the person who is in control of the dog during the incident will be considered the owner of the dog.

They will be liable for any damage and may be either fined or prosecuted in the Magistrates Court.

My pet is missing – where do I go?

If your dog or cat has been found wandering from home, they will be taken to the animal shelter located at the RSPCA, 3 Burwood Highway, Burwood East.

If your pet is missing or if you have found a lost pet, you can:

Lost animals are held for a period of eight days which is set by the Domestic Animal Act.

A release fee will be charged to reclaim your animal, and any unregistered animals will be required to be registered before they will be released to you.

A penalty may also be issued if your dog or cat was found to be 'at large' before being taken to the animal shelter.

Opening hours

The animal reclaim, surrender, lost and found area is open:

  • 9am to 5pm, Monday to Sunday
  • 9am to 4.30pm, Good Friday and Christmas Day

Barking dogs

The first action between neighbours about a noisy dog should be a quiet and calm talk about the problem.

Noisy dogs are a nuisance to your neighbours. A dog usually barks or howls because it is bored or lonely.

Most dog owners do not realise their dogs are barking and disrupting the neighbourhood because they usually only bark when you are not at home.

Keep your dog well exercised, fed and content, and its barking problem is well on the way to being resolved.


To understand why your dog is barking and what training and management techniques can be applied to prevent the problem from becoming worse, download and read the information sheet for dog owners (PDF, 39.1 kB)

If a neighbour approaches you in a friendly manner about your dog barking during the day, discuss the problem and take some action to control your dog when you are absent.


To report a noisy dog, submit an online barking dog report.

Report a barking dog

Council accepts barking dog complaints 24 hours a day, every day, and investigations may occur anytime if it is deemed appropriate.  

As already stated, the first action between neighbours about a noisy dog should be a quiet and calm talk about the problem. If this doesn't resolve it, another avenue to try is to contact the Dispute Settlement Service, Level 4, 456 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne; phone 9603 8370 or email dscv@justice.vic.gov.au. This service uses mediation to settle disputes. It is a private, free service.

With no other action available, Council may consider applying for a Court order, but you will have to provide information – such as diaries of barking – as it is you, not Council, who will need to convince a Court the dog is a persistent nuisance.

Dangerous dogs

Dangerous dogs can pose a serious threat to the community. Council may declare a dog to be a dangerous dog. This will have serious consequences concerning how you must house and look after your dog.

Council has power to declare a dog to be a dangerous dog if it:

  • has caused serious injury to a person or animal by biting or attacking
  • is kept as a guard dog or has been trained to attack people or animals for the purpose of guarding people or property
  • is declared a menacing dog and its owner has received at least two infringement notices for the dog not being leashed and/or muzzled in a public place
  • has been declared a dangerous dog by another council.

For more information:

Menacing dogs

If your dog rushes at, or chases a person, or has been declared a menacing dog by another council, it can be declared a menacing dog in Boroondara. Menacing dogs must be controlled in a manner similar to dangerous dogs.

Penalties apply to the owners of dangerous and menacing dogs who do not comply with the requirement.

Dog rush: if a dog approaches a person within three metres in a menacing manner, displaying aggressive signs such as snarling, growling or raised hackles, is it known as 'dog rush' and is a reportable offence. 

For more information:

Restricted breed dogs

Restricted breed dogs are generally Pit Bull Terriers, however, Fila Brasiliero, Japanese Tosa, Dogo Argentino, Perro de Presa Canario (or Presa Canario) are also restrcicted breeds.

From 29 September 2011, Pit Bull cross breeds were also considered a restricted breed dog.

Under the new laws which came into effect on 30 September 2011, you can only keep a restricted breed dog if it was in Victoria before 1 September 2010 and registered (as any breed) before 30 September 2011.

Restricted-breed dogs that do not fit this criteria will be seized and put down.

Owners face strict controls when housing a restricted breed dog.

Wandering cats

Serious problems can occur if cats are allowed to roam outdoors, especially between dusk and dawn.

Roaming cats can get hit by cars, injured in fights, catch fatal diseases (for example, feline AIDS) or become lost.

About 80 per cent of accidents involving cats happen at night. The hours between dusk and dawn are also when cats are most likely to kill native wildlife and even well fed cats will hunt.

Cats can also annoy neighbours at night by spraying, fighting, yowling and digging in gardens.

Cats kept inside at night generally live at least three times longer than cats that are allowed to roam. It is a cat owner's responsibility to ensure their cat is not a nuisance to neighbours and is restrained to their property.

What you can do:

If a neighbourhood cat is coming onto your property and causing a nuisance, you are entitled to contain the cat and contact Council.

Council can then return the cat to the owner and advise them of the nuisance.

If the nuisance persists, Council must issue a nuisance abatement order against the owner and the cat's owner will be advised of your address, as they are obliged under the order to stop their cat from entering your property.

Cages for trapping and containing cats can be hired from Local Laws: