A permit system will be introduced across NSW to help curb irresponsible pet ownership and to increase the welfare of animals.
From July 1 cat owners who have not desexed their cat by four months old will be required to pay an $80 annual permit in addition to their one-off lifetime pet registration fee. Meanwhile, dog owners of a restricted breed or formally declared to be dangerous will be required to pay a $195 annual permit in addition to their one-off lifetime pet registration fee.
The NSW Government is launching the new annual permit system for non-desexed cats and restricted and dangerous dogs to promote responsible pet ownership and improve animal welfare standards across the state.
The hope is for the permits to create a stronger incentive to desex cats which will improve their well-being and will also help stop irresponsible breeding and unwanted litters.
This, in turn, will help ease the burden on pounds and shelters.
A number of pet owners across the Macleay will be impacted by the permits. Kempsey Shire Council's Manager Development and Compliance, Graham Snow, said the measures are being introduced to encourage pet owners to do the right thing.
"Annual permits for non-desexed cats will create a stronger incentive to desex cats, which will in turn improve their health and wellbeing, including reducing the risk of some cancers," he said.
"Improving desexing rates will also lower demand on pounds and shelters and help to address concerns about feral, stray, and roaming cats and their effect on wildlife.
"Annual permits for dangerous and restricted dogs will improve community safety by helping to reduce ownership of high-risk dogs and encouraging owners to better manage the behaviour of their animal."
The NSW Government has also made a one-off $10 reduction to the lifetime cat registration fee to encourage higher registration rates and promote the adoption of cats from pounds and shelters.
Exemptions are in place for cats that are registered by July 1 2020, those kept for breeding purposes by members of recognised breeding bodies and cats which cannot be desexed for medical reasons.
Local pet owners will be able to pay for the annual permits using the NSW Pet Registry website.
Annual permit fees will go directly to the Companion Animals Fund which pays for companion animal management by local councils including pounds/shelters, ranger services, dog recreation areas, and education and awareness programs.
The fund is also used to operate the NSW Pet Registry and carry out responsible pet ownership initiatives.
For more information about the permits go to council's website or phone 6566 3200.