What's On

Dog Control Policy and Bylaw consultation

Council proposed to adopt the Draft Kāpiti Coast District Council Dog Control Bylaw 2018 and the Draft Kāpiti Coast District Council Dog Control Policy 2018. Council also considered the feasibility of five sites across the District for future off-leash dog exercise areas.

Submissions have now closed

Feedback was asked to be given on the Draft Bylaw, the Draft Policy, and the five sites that had been identified as possible locations for future off-leash dog exercise areas.

To enable public understanding of (i) the review process, (ii) the proposed changes to the existing Bylaw and Policy, and (iii) the five sites that could potentially be developed as dog exercise areas, Council provided the following material:


The formal consultative period closed on 14 September 2018.

Speaking at the hearing

People who requested to speak to Council about the proposals will be contacted shortly to arrange a time.

Submissions will be heard on 25 October 2018.


Dog Control Policy and Bylaw FAQs

Did you know that we have more dog ownership per capita than anywhere else in the Wellington region? Just over 11% of our residents have at least one dog, so it’s important that our Dog Control Policy and Dog Control Bylaw work for both dog owners and those who don’t own dogs.

To give you an idea of the kinds of things covered in the policy and bylaw, we’ve pulled together this collection of FAQs. These FAQs reflect the dog-related issues most commonly raised with the Council.


What do dog registration fees pay for?

Dog registration fees pay for the cost of animal management services, which the Council is required to provide under the Dog Control Act 1996. The services covered by registration fees include:

•             promoting the welfare, care, and control of dogs;

•             24-hour emergency response to urgent and threatening dog control complaints;

•             rehoming dogs;

•             responding to wandering complaints and impounding dogs;

•             providing and maintaining quality animal shelter facilities;

•             implementing dog management policies; and

•             monitoring and enforcing the Dog Control Bylaw 2008 and the Dog Control Act 1996.


Why has Council reduced the number of boxed poo bags that are given out with registration?

The boxed dog poo bags have been offered to dog owners for a number of years. This year, we’ve cut the number of boxes we give out from one per dog to one per household. We’re encouraging dog owners to use environmentally-friendly alternatives like biodegradable bags.


How does Council decide where they place bins in dog exercising areas?

We look at accessibility and how often a route is used to decide where and how many bins should be on it. Bins need to be placed strategically for the people and dogs who use them, and also for Council employees who empty them.


How many dogs can I have at my property?

No more than two dogs can live at an urban residential property. If you want more, you can apply for a permit.


What are ‘minimum standards of care’?

Minimum standards of care cover the fundamental responsibilities of being a dog owner, including appropriate shelter, adequate food and water, and necessary veterinary care. For a full explanation, see Section 7 of the Draft Dog Control Bylaw.


Can I take my dog with me to my town centre?

All of the Kāpiti Coast’s town centres are dog-on-leash areas except for Mahara Place, which is a no-dog area. One of the proposed changes in this review is to make Mahara Place a dog-on-leash area. We’d love to know what you think.


Can I take my dog with me when I watch my kids play sports?

You can, but they’re only allowed on the edge of the field, not on the field itself. Our District’s sports fields are strict on-leash areas – they’re busy places, full of people either playing games on the grass or watching from the sidelines. This environment has a general level of noise and excitement that can over-stimulate your dog, leading to unexpected and potentially dangerous situations. And, not everyone is comfortable around dogs.


Why can’t I exercise my dog on the sports field when no events are happening on or around it?

You are permitted to exercise your dog around the edges, just not on the field itself, regardless of whether or not they’re in use at the time. Sports fields are community recreational areas where people, including children, come into close contact with the ground. Contamination from dog urine and/or faeces can lead to some nasty infections. We recognise that most dog owners pick up after their dogs, but it’s a health risk we want to avoid.


What are the rules for dogs on children’s playgrounds?

Dogs are not allowed to be on or around children’s playgrounds.


What is a ‘sensitive site’?

The Kāpiti Coast has many areas of cultural and ecological significance that must be protected from the potentially harmful disturbance of many things, including dogs. Through this review, we’ve identified areas that we’re proposing should be considered sensitive.

A sensitive site is either:

•             an area that’s important to animals and plants that are vulnerable to potentially harmful disturbance by dogs; and/or

•             a culturally significant area that’s vulnerable to potentially harmful disturbance by dogs.


Why doesn’t the Council have more dog signage around Kāpiti?

We’re planning on putting more signs up, but waiting until after the Dog Control Policy and Bylaw consultation to finish before we do because the messages might change.