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Here are two pet laws that exist in most Australian states that new cat owners in these areas must ensure they adhere to.
Microchipping and registering their new cat
In most parts of Australia, a person who decides to get a cat must have the cat microchipped and register their new pet with the local authority in their area. The microchipping of a cat is done by a vet and involves inserting an electronic chip under the animal's skin (usually between the shoulder blades). The chip will have the cat's unique identification number, which will be linked to the owner's name and contact information, which will be added to a national database at the time of the microchipping. If in the future, the cat goes missing and is found by someone, that person can have the cat's microchip scanned so the animal can be reunited with their owner. If a cat owner's pet is found not to be microchipped, in a part of Australia where microchipping of cats is a legal requirement, that person could be fined by the local authority.
Similarly, new cat owners in most areas of Australia are legally required to register their pets with their local authorities. When doing this, they'll usually be asked to provide their own contact information, along with their pet's microchip number, and identifying physical features (such as the cat's breed, coat colouring, eye colour, etc.). This information will then normally be kept in an online database, and the cat owner may be given a registration tag or other document to prove they've done this. Like microchipping, registration of a pet cat can help with reuniting the animal with its owner if it ever goes missing, and fines may be issued to cat owners who don't comply with this legal requirement.
Following any cat curfews that have been established in their state
In many places around the world, it's common for cat owners to let their pets roam around the local area, unsupervised, overnight. However, in some Australian states, cat curfews have been established. In these areas of Australia, there are laws regarding the hours during which people must keep their cats indoors. The purpose of cat curfews in Australia is to minimise the impact that the presence of domestic cats has on the local wildlife. Because they are natural predators, cats who are allowed to roam outdoors at night unattended can pose a risk to nocturnal wildlife, such as small reptiles, possums and owls.
If a cat owner residing in a place with a cat curfew is found to have knowingly left their cat out during a curfew time period, they could be fined. However, there are specific situations in which cat owners can break these curfews. For example, cats may be allowed outdoors during curfew times if they are with their owners and are being walked on leads, or if they are kept outside within an enclosed area, under the supervision of their owner.
To learn more about pet laws, reach out to a local law office.Share