Every dog must have a valid licence.
NOTICE: All dog licences, with the exception of general dog licences (for five dogs or more) must be purchased from any post office or online here. General licences are available from the Council. The current cost of a general licence is €400. An annual dog licence is €20 and life-time licence is €140, which are both issued by An Post at any Post Office or onine at www.licences.ie
If you do not have a current dog licence, the Dog Warden can issue you with a fine of €100. If you receive a fine and it remains unpaid the Council will take legal action against you.
Dog Fines can be issued for the following:
- Failure to have and produce a current licence
- No collar and/or ID
- No muzzle and/or no lead for restricted breed (see below for list of restricted breeds)
- Greyhounds - No lead
- Failure to keep your dog under effectual control
Keeping Your Pet Under Control
Dogs must be kept under effectual control at all times. All dogs must be accompanied at all times when in a public place. They must be on a lead or trained to heel and must remain next to the person walking the dog at all times. Failure to keep your pet under control in a public place may incur a fine of €100.
Worrying of Sheep
If your dog worries sheep, you will be obliged to pay compensation once they are traced. Dog owners should also remember that farmers are legally permitted to shoot dogs straying onto their land.
Report Stray or Wandering Dogs
The Dog Warden will collect stray dogs and bring them to the Council's Pound where they will be kept for 5 days. If the owner has not been found, the Pound will endeavour to re-home the dog. The Dog Pound will not put down a healthy dog.
If you find a stray dog, you should contact the Council's Environmental Enforcement, Litter and Animal Control Section on 01 205 4700. The Council will arrange for the Dog Warden to collect the dog and take it to the Dog Pound.
Re-home a Dog
The Council encourages members of the public who want to home a dog to consider adopting from one of the many animal welfare and rescue organisations around the Country.
If you have lost your dog, you should contact the Council's Environmental Enforcement, Litter and Animal Control Section at 01 2054700 to enquire if your dog has been reported as found.
Spaying / Neutering
Every year in Ireland around 30,000 unwanted puppies have to be put to sleep. Spaying and neutering are the surgical procedures used to stop dogs from having puppies. These procedures also reduce the risk of your pet contracting life threatening diseases. Your local vet can perform the procedure and your dog will be fully healed within 2 weeks.
The "Micro-chipping of Dogs Regulations, 2015", require that all pups must be micro-chipped by the time they reach the age of 12 weeks or before they leave the property on which they were born. The micro-chipping must be registered on a Government approved database which can be found here and the breeder or owner must have a certificate from the database containing the pup's and the owner’s details.
It is illegal to sell, supply, buy or take ownership of a pup that does not have a certificate of micro-chip registration from an approved database. This law applies to all dogs.
Micro-chipping is a simple way to make sure your dog can be identified if it is separated from you. All dogs must always wear a collar and an ID tag with the name and address of its owner when in a public place.
Any dog micro-chipped prior to the commencement of these regulations DOES NOT need to be re-chipped. The owner must, however, ensure that his/her details are stored on an approved database and that they are correct. The database will then supply the dog owner with a certificate confirming this.
It is against the law not to clean up after your dog. Small plastic sacks are available from many shops for a very low price and are ideal for cleaning up after your dog. Anyone identified allowing his/her dog to foul in a public place will be issued with a fine of €150. To report incidents of dog fouling, please contact the Dog Control Section at 01 205 4700.
Muzzling / Restricted Breeds
The following types of dogs MUST be muzzled at all times when out in public:
- American Pitt Bull Terrier
- Bull Mastiff
- Doberman Pinscher
- English Bull Terrier
- German Shepherd / Alsatian
- Japanese Akita
- Japanese Tosa
- Rhodesian Ridgeback
- Staffordshire Bull Terrier
- Any crossbreed of the above
These dogs must also be led by a person over the age of 16 and kept on a strong chain or lead not longer than 2 metres. Failure to do this will incur a fine of €100.
If a dog in your area is causing a nuisance by barking, you have the right to petition to the District Court for an injunction to prevent the dog barking. The procedure in relation to barking dogs is as follows:
- The complainant must contact the District Court Clerk in Dún Laoghaire District Court on Corrig Avenue, Dún Laoghaire; phone No. 01 280 0038. The Clerk will allocate a time and date for the case.
- The complainant must complete the attached Dog Barking Complaints Form (above right) and serve it on the owner of the dog(s) concerned
- The District Justice will hear the case on the appointed date and may take one of three decisions as listed on the notice.
It is advisable to make a note of the dates and times that the nuisance is caused. This may be of benefit if and when the case is heard in Court.
Under the Parks Bye-Laws, it is an offence for a dog to be off-leash in parks in the county, with the exception of Killiney Hill Park and the specific off-leash areas in Cabinteely, Deerpark, Marlay and Shanganagh Parks.
Please note that restricted breeds are prohibited from being off-leash at any of these locations.
Under the Council's Beach Bye Laws 2012 the following restrictions in relation to dogs apply:
Bathing Area - NO dogs allowed all year round
Bathing Area - NO dogs allowed all year round
Outside Bathing Area - 10.00 am to 7.00 pm - dogs must be on a leash all year round
Bathing Area - NO dogs allowed from 1st June to 15th September from 10.00 am to 7.00 pm
At all other times in the bathing area dogs are required to be on a leash.
The above restrictions do not apply to guide dogs for the blind
Dog Breeding Establishment Guidelines
Guidelines for Dog Breeding Establishments (including boarding kennels) under the Dog Breeding Establishments Act 2010 can be found at www.agriculture.gov.ie.