Domestic Animal Keeping


With the introduction of the Local Government Act 1999, several By-Laws that previously related to the keeping of poultry, bees etc were revoked. Under this revised Local Government Act, the keeping of domestic animals is now covered in a far more general way by Order Making powers. This new approach does not set out specific guidelines but rather is assessed on a ‘case by case’ situation. The important components of keeping domestic animals is not to allow a situation to develop that creates a nuisance, a danger or a health risk to your neighbours. The keeping of excessive numbers of animals, the generation of dust, noise or odours, the keeping of aggressive animals or the attraction of vermin and pests all need to be avoided. 

For anyone contemplating the keeping of animals or who may already have animals, the following important points should be kept in mind:

locate pens, runs, cages etc as far away as possible from adjoining houses

if keeping poultry, provide concrete flooring to any roosting/nesting areas

ensure all roosting/nesting areas are adequately enclosed to provide animals with protection from the weather

do not overstock the area available for animal keeping

avoid the temptation to have a rooster or any other animal that generates a lot of noise

ensure all food storage containers for the animals are vermin and insect proof and kept clean

do not over feed animals as excessive feed will attract vermin and pests

regularly change the water in drink containers to avoid mosquito breeding

all pens, runs, cages etc should be regularly cleaned and maintained

any table scraps fed to the animals and not eaten within twenty four hours should be removed to help prevent fly and vermin attraction

spread straw around pens, runs, cages etc to absorb animal droppings and prevent fly breeding; this straw can turn into a great mulch for your garden

the keeping of poultry, ducks etc on smaller sized allotments should be avoided

some human diseases are transmitted via animals and so always wash your hands vigorously after attending to your pets

ALWAYS keep in mind that the animals you keep should not inconvenience your neighbours

Should you need any clarification of the above points or want to discuss in general terms the domestic keeping of animals, please contact staff of Council’s Health and Public Safety Department.