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Keeping a dog in Knox

We're real dog lovers in the city of Knox, with over 18,500 dogs registered with Council.

As a dog owner, you have rights and responsibilities both to your pet and to the community.

Responsible dog care

As a dog owner, you must provide accommodation, supervision and care for your pet at all times.

There are minimum standards of day-to-day care you must provide for your furry friend. 

Dogs in public places

Knox is full of parks, bushland reserves, shared paths, bicycle paths and the footpaths. Many people enjoy sharing our public spaces with their dogs.

For everyone to enjoy these shared public places responsible dog ownership is needed.

Dog waste

The most common dog complaint to Council is about dog droppings or dog waste on footpaths and in parks.

Council’s Amenity Local Law 2020 requires dog owners to remove and dispose of their dog's waste in public places. It's an offence not to carry something (for example, a bag or scoop) to remove waste.

You must pick up and remove any dog droppings every time you walk your dog.

Dog park

Knox City Council has a fully fenced, off-lead dog play park at Knox Park Reserve.

Dogs and leads

There are many reserves and parks in Knox where your dog can run and play off-lead.

Dogs may be taken off-lead in a Council reserve when they are under control of a person at all times. A dog is not under control if it:

  • wanders into other peoples property
  • strays away from the person in charge of it
  • engages in activity likely to cause injury to another person, animal or property.

On-lead areas

Dogs must be on-lead on:

  • footpaths
  • bike tracks
  • walking tracks
  • children's playgrounds
  • schools
  • shopping centres
  • car parks
  • conservation bushlands.

There are 9 bushland reserves in Knox that need a dog to be on a lead at all times. These are:

  • Egan Lee Reserve
  • Flamingo Road Reserve
  • Gilmore Park Retarding Basin
  • J W Manson Reserve
  • Koolunga Native Reserve (except the lawn areas)
  • Lakewood Reserve
  • Tim Neville Arboretum
  • Wicks Reserve (east and west)
  • W G Morris Reserve.

Off-lead areas

Dogs may be off-lead but under effective control in a public park or recreation reserve.

But at all times:

  • dog owners must carry a chain, cord or leash to restrain the dog
  • dog owners must remain within effective voice or hand control distance of the dog at all times 
  • a person in charge of the dog must not allow the dog to chase or threaten another person or animal.

Always be respectful in open spaces as they are used by dog lovers, sports lovers and nature lovers.

Barking dogs

Non-stop barking or howling is a nuisance as well as a sign that something may wrong.

Find out more about coping with barking dogs

Dog registration

All dogs over three months of age must be registered with Council.

Pet registration is a State Government requirement under the Domestic Animal Act 1994.

Register your dog here

Find out more about registering your dog.


In Knox, we promote the desexing of dogs. Desexing reduces aggressive tendencies and wandering at large.

Dogs do not have to be desexed to be registered with Knox City Council.

Desexing vouchers for concession card holders

Disadvantaged and vulnerable community members can apply for a voucher up to $200 to put towards the cost of desexing a dog.

Council will contribute to the cost of the procedure to a nominated Vet Clinic. We do not reimburse pet owners directly.

Please ensure that the Vet Clinic you have chosen is participating in this initiative prior to desexing your dog. 


To be eligible you must be:

  • the owner of the dog
  • a valid concession card holder that lists an address in Knox
  • your address must match the details listed on your concession card.

You must also submit evidence of at least one of the following concession cards:

  • Centrelink Health Care Card
  • Pensioner Concession Card - Department of Human Services or Centrelink
  • Pensioner Concession Card - Department of Veterans' Affairs
  • DVA Gold Repatriation Health Card – TPI
  • DVA Gold Repatriation Health Card - War Widow.

Does my dog need to be registered?

If your cat is unregistered, we will waive the initial cost of the first year of registration period.

This offer will finish on 9 April 2023.

You can register your dog online.

How to apply

  1. Apply for a desexing voucher online
  2. Make a desexing appointment with a nominated Vet Clinic
  3. Take the voucher and a current vaccination certificate to the veterinarian at the time of the appointment.

Information for Vet Clinics

Vet Clinics seeking reimbursement from Council must provide the following documents within 30 days of the desexing procedure:

  • a copy of the tax invoice
  • a copy of the Council voucher provided by the pet owner.

The tax invoice must include:

  • customer and animal details (must match the Council voucher)
  • Details of the procedure performed
  • total cost of the procedure
  • amount paid by the customer
  • outstanding amount payable by Council
  • payment details.

Please submit these documents to, with the subject line 'Attention Community Laws'.

Random door knocks

Council conducts random door knocks throughout Knox to check for unregistered animals.

You may be fined for if unregistered dogs and cats are found. 

You need a permit to have more than two cats or two dogs on one property.

Need help?

Contact us and we will get back to you.

Or call our Community Laws department on 9298 8000.

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