Time to register furry friends

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Warrnambool residents will be asked to renew their pet registrations over coming weeks.

“Pet owners have started to receive pet registration renewal letters,” Warrnambool City Council Chief Executive Officer Andrew Mason said.

“We have about 5,900 registered pets in the city, of which about 4,300 are dogs.

“Along with pet registration being a legal requirement there are also great benefits to having your pet registered.

“If your registered cat or dog is found wandering the streets it’s easier for our Local Laws officers to return your pet directly to you because we’ll have all the necessary contact details.

“Our officers make a concerted effort to reunite registered animals with their owners as quickly as possible.

“When pets are not registered, reunification takes longer.

“There is a misconception that when a dog or cat is picked up by Council staff it’s taken directly to the animal shelter –  but our first priority is try to contact the owner.”

The annual cost to register a sterilised cat or dog is $72 or $36 for pensioners. These charges have not increased over the past three years.

“The cost of registration subsidises the running of the Local Laws service and the animal shelter, which helps rehome pets each year,” Mr Mason said.

“Our officers also conduct after-hours patrols, attend to nuisance complaints including barking complaints and investigate dog attacks.

 “We estimate there are a further 220 unregistered dogs and cats, with this number is based on these pets having been previously registered but the registration has not been renewed.

“We know that in some instances the pet will have died or been given away but we do need pet owners to let us know if this has happened.”

Renewing registration is much simpler than re-registering a pet which requires owners to provide microchip and desexing documentation.

There is also a fine for failing to register a pet which is $385.

It is a requirement for dogs and cats to be registered under the Domestic Animals Act (1994).

Pet registration is required under the Domestic Animals Act and Council is required to pay the Victorian Government $4.23 for each pet that is on the animal register.