Responsible dog owner status recognises responsible dog owner practices and entitles you to a reduced annual registration fee when payment is made by 30 June each year.

Applications closed

Applications for responsible dog owner status have closed for 2022 dog registration. Applications for 2023 dog registration will open on 1 August 2022.

To be classified as a responsible dog owner, you must meet all conditions and criteria below, but generally have a record of:

  • good and responsible dog ownership.
  • consistent and timely payment of dog registration fees.
  • compliance with relevant legal requirements.

To claim the reduced fee you are required to pay your registration fees by 30 June each year.  Higher fees apply if paid after 30 June. If you fail to pay your fees by 31 July you may lose your responsible dog owner status for two years. 

You must have: 

  • resided in the Christchurch City Council district for at least 12 months and have registered your dogs in Christchurch.
  • paid your dog registration fees on or before 31 July for the last two years.
  • all dogs microchipped in accordance with the Dog Control Act 1996, including providing the microchip numbers to the Council.
  • a licence to keep more than two dogs on their property (if applicable).
  • complied with the requirements of the Dog Control Act 1996 and the current Christchurch City Council Dog Control Bylaw, and must not, in the last two years, have:    
    • had a dog found at large, been uncontrolled, returned or impounded by Council Animal Management staff.
    • been issued with a warning notice for any dog-related offence, or an infringement offence notice under the Dog Control Act 1996.
    • been prosecuted for any dog-related offence.

The property where the dog resides must:

  • be suitably fenced and gated to contain the dog.
  • allow dog-free access to a door of the dwelling for authorised callers.

Owners of dogs classified as menacing (by deed) under the Dog Control Act 1996 are not generally eligible to apply for responsible dog owner status. If they cease to be the owner of such a dog, they may then be considered.

Owners of dogs classified as dangerous under the Dog Control Act 1996 are not eligible to apply for responsible dog owner status. If they cease to be the owner of such a dog, they may then be considered.

Applications must be received and approved between 1 August and 30 April to enable the successful applicant to gain responsible dog owner status for the upcoming dog registration year commencing 1 July.

All dogs you own must be controlled in accordance with the Dog Control Act 1996 and with the current Christchurch City Council Dog Control Bylaw.

The Council reserves the right to carry out random property inspections (in accordance with the Dog Control Act) to ensure compliance with good ownership practices.

You must inform the Council of any changes in the dog owner or dog registration details or residential and/or postal address changes within 14 days of the change. This includes information on the death, sale, or transfer of any dogs, and the birth of any pups/dogs.

Any breach of the criteria and conditions of this policy may lead to the immediate withdrawal of responsible dog owner status.

Should responsible dog owner status be withdrawn from an owner because the criteria and conditions of this policy have been breached, that owner may not be considered for the status for two years after the date of the withdrawal.