Your Responsibilities


Cat sitting in long grass

Cats are one of the most popular domestic companion animals and they are an important part of our society.

Being a cat owner is enjoyable and rewarding however brings with it responsibilities.

As a pet owner, it is your responsibility to ensure your cat is happy and healthy and is not negatively impacting the community in any way.


Desexing your cat is essential in the ACT to reduce the number of neglected and abandoned cats.

Owning a sexually entire cat is irresponsible and is a strict liability offence under the Domestic Animals Act 2000 to own a sexually entire cat.

You cat must be desexed unless:

  • the cat is less than three months old
  • the cat was born before 21 June 2001
  • the keeper of the cat holds a sexually entire permit issued by the Registrar of DAS.

Infringement notices can be issued for owning a sexually entire cat without meeting one of the above exceptions.Cat walking in grass through the bush

Sexually entire permits

A permit to keep a cat sexually entire can be obtained from DAS if the registrar is satisfied that:

  • the animal is kept for breeding or used, bred or bought for show
  • it would be detrimental to the health of the animal if it were to be de-sexed.

An application form can be obtained from Domestic Animal Services , where it must also be lodged. A fee applies.


All cats in the ACT must be microchipped.

Microchipping is a safe procedure where a silicon chip, approximately the size of a grain of rice, is implanted under the skin of the animal. The procedure takes less than a minute and, once inserted, the chip cannot be lost. A dog or cat of any age can be microchipped.

Few animals show any signs of discomfort during this simple and quick procedure.

Cats can be microchipped by the RSPCA or any veterinarian.

Microchipping is an effective way for animal shelters and vets to identify lost dogs and cats for quick return to their owners.

If you've ever lost your pet you'll understand the stress and upset it can cause to the whole family. Having your dog or cat microchipped is a simple and easy way to reduce the anguish and it could save your pet's life.

If you move house, you should update both your pet's registration and microchipping records to reflect the details are updated. To update your contact details for your cats registration please email DAS at or call Access Canberra on 13 22 81. To update your details for your cats microchip, please visit

It is an offence under the Domestic Animals Act 2000 to keep a cat which is not micro-chipped.

Cat identification and registration

Cats must wear identification so that they can be returned to their owner if found. Cats can be identified by a collar and tag that includes the owner's contact number or address.

Cats are not required to be registered in the ACT.Cat looking top

Keeping four or more cats

Persons wishing to keep four or more cats must make an application under Section 84B of the Domestic Animals Act 2000. Application forms can be obtained from DAS. A fee for a multiple cats licence is payable if the licence is granted.
Application for a licence to keep four or more cats (PDF 88KB) | Word version (DOC 94KB)

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We acknowledge the Traditional Custodians of the ACT, the Ngunnawal people. We acknowledge and respect their continuing culture and the contribution they make to the life of this city and this region.