Top Navigation

Cat ownership comes with it own responsibilities and residents with cats need be aware of their obligations as responsible pet owners.

Responsible cat ownership

Cat owners are encouraged to follow the guidelines below to ensure responsible cat ownership:
Microchip your cat before 12 weeks old or earlier if they are sold or given away

  • All cats born after 1 July 1999 must be Lifetime Registered by the time they are 6 months of age or when they are sold or given away
  • If your cat was born before 1 July 1999 it must have either a collar and an identification tag or be microchipped 
  • Desex your cat to prevent unwanted kittens and minimise cat population problems, excessive roaming and unwanted cat territorial behaviour 
  • Attach two bells to your cats collar to prevent attacks on native birds
  • Keep your cat inside between dusk and dawn and monitor your cat’s activities during the day 
  • Make arrangements for a responsible person to stay with your cat or place your cat in a boarding facility if you go away.

Cat ownership laws and fines

Laws relating to Cat ownership can be found at the Austlit website under the NSW Companion Act 1998 and the NSW Companion Animals Regulation 1999 

Nuisance cats

If you believe a cat is being a nuisance and you can identify the cat’s owner, please contact Council Customer Service Centre on 02 9392 5000.

Cats and the Environment

Owning a cat can have positive physical, psychological health benefits. Cats make ideal pets as they are generally independent, quiet and clean and do not require a lot of training. However, cats can have a negative effect on our environment if a responsible person does not control them.

The Leichhardt area contains over 80 species of native animals (birds, reptiles, frogs, mammals and fish) including an endangered population of Long-nosed Bandicoots.    All cats are natural hunters regardless of being owned or unowned, hungry or fed regularly. Cats are opportunistic hunters stalking and preying on many species of native wildlife and other small animals.


  • Cats may stalk, prey & kill many species of native wildlife and other small animals
  • Cat may spread diseases to native animals through bites and scratches


  • Keep your cat indoors, especially at night when most native animals are active
  • Place a collar on your cat with 2 bells attached to alert wildlife
  • Consider an outdoor enclosure to contain your cat

Download the pdf-new-icon.gifCats and the Environment Flyer (PDF 553.3KB)Open this document with ReadSpeaker docReader