Proposed Cat Curfew

Submissions closing on 14 April 2023, 05:00 PM

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In 2021, Council adopted a new Domestic Animal Management Plan, and feedback received during the consultation period called for stronger cat management measures. 

As a result, we're now considering the introduction of a cat curfew and mandatory cat desexing and are keen to hear your thoughts. 


The Domestic Animals Act 1994 requires that all dogs be confined to their owner's property unless under effective control (i.e. on a leash) or in a designated off-leash area.

The requirement for cats is not quite the same. The Act requires cat owners to not allow their pets to trespass, and these trespassing cats can be impounded. Owners can be issued with on-the-spot fines if they've been served with a notice of objection to their cat's trespassing.

Councils can introduce a Domestic Animals Order (Order in Council) requiring cats to be confined to their owner's property boundary, a building or a dwelling (depending on the order) and times of confinement can also be noted in the order. Councils can also introduce an Order requiring cats to be desexed before accepting registration.

We recognise that cats are popular pets and important as companion animals and the introduction of a cat management strategy may have a number of positive outcomes including more proactive cat ownership and better cat wellbeing through containment, including the prevention of road trauma, disease and injury.

Many organisations, including the Cat Protection Society of Victoria and the RSPCA, are supportive of curfew measures and many Victorian Councils have already introduced such measures.

It is with these factors in mind as well as nuisance complaints, overpopulation and the impacts on wildlife that we are considering the introduction of these regulations.

What is a cat curfew?

A cat curfew is a specified time when cats are not allowed outside of your property boundary (for example, from dusk to dawn), or, in the case of a 24 hour curfew, are required to remain within your property boundaries at all times.

Have your say

We're keen to hear from all members of our community, not just cat owners.

Your input and feedback will be used to help Council decide whether to introduce a cat curfew and mandatory desexing of new registrations and how Council can support residents and cat owners.

Share your feedback and ideas by hitting the button below to complete our survey.

Complete our survey

Drop-in sessions

If you have questions or discussion points that you'd like to talk through with our team in person, we'll be holding the following drop-in sessions across the Shire:




Thursday 09 March

9:00am – 11:00am

Rutherglen Library

Thursday 09 March

12:30pm – 1:30pm

Outside Barnawartha PO

Thursday 09 March

2:30pm – 4:00pm

Chiltern Laneway

Friday 10 March

9:00am – 10:30am

Yackandandah library

Friday 10 March

12noon – 2:00pm

Outside Stanley PO

Friday 10 March

3:30pm – 5:00pm

Beechworth Library

Thursday 16 March

9:00am – 10:00am

Tangambalanga General Store

Wednesday 22 March 2:00pm - 3:00pm Wahgunyah Licensed Post Office