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Choosing an Animal

             

 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

Not everyone is a cat or a dog person, and many people like to keep birds or other animals on their properties. However, these animals have responsibilities and needs just like any other pet and by being kept in a residential area; this can compromise not only the wellbeing of the animal, but also the amenity of the surrounding neighbourhood. To ensure you keep your animal in a happy and safe environment without upsetting your neighbours, it is recommended you read and follow the guidelines below.

Before you bring your new pet home, you should consider its suitability in your household and in your neighbourhood.

Ask yourself the following questions: 

  • Do you have sufficient land for the animal’s needs? Keep in mind that while some animals start out small, they do eventually grow up!
  • Does the animal require a lot of grooming, maintenance, or exercise and if so, do you have the time for this?
  • Can you prevent the animal or bird escaping from your yard? 
  • Could the animal cause a noise or odour nuisance to your neighbours?
  • Does the animal require a structure to be housed, such as a stable or an aviary, and can you erect such a structure on your land? You must check with Council’s Building Team before construction starts to see if a Development Application (DA) is required.

All animals must be kept in such a way so they do not create a nuisance, an offensive odour or unhealthy conditions. Failure to do so can result in Council issuing an order to limit or prevent the number of animals can you can keep, or the order can place restrictions on the way the animals are kept.

Part 5 Schedule 2 of the Local Government (General) Regulation 2005 sets out the standards for keeping birds and animals other than cats or dogs. These standards are summarised below.

Swine (Pigs)

The keeping of pigs is not considered appropriate in a residential area. Without the proper space and mental stimulation, a pig can become quite destructive. Pigs must not be kept within 60 metres of a dwelling (house), shop, office, factory, church or any other public place of worship, a workshop, school or public place in a city, town, village or other urban part of an area, or any place used for the manufacture, preparation, sale or storage of food. 

Pigs must be kept in a manner that they cannot pollute any water supplied for use by a person (for drinking or domestic purposes) or a dairy. A pig’s dung must also be collected on a regular basis and should not be deposited in any water or in a way that has the potential to pollute water.

Did you know? According to the RSPCA, there is no such thing as a miniature pig in Australia The smallest pig will still generally grow to a size of 90 kg! Find out more on the RSPCA website.

Poultry (Birds)

Poultry must be kept without causing a nuisance to surrounding neighbours and properties. Chickens and guinea fowls must not be kept within 4.5 metres of a dwelling, public hall, school or premises used for the manufacture, preparation, sale or storage of food. 

Poultry other than fowl (such as ducks, geese or turkeys) must not be kept within 30 metres of the above mentioned buildings.  Your poultry yards must be kept clean at all times and be free of offensive odours. The floor of the poultry house must be paved with concrete or mineral asphalt, unless they are located more than 15.2 metres of a dwelling, public hall or school and are situated on clean sand. The yard must be fully enclosed to prevent the escape of any birds. The poultry house must be constructed so that roof water can be disposed of in such a way that it does not cause a nuisance to any adjoining properties. The keeping of roosters is not recommended in a residential area as they may create a noise nuisance to your neighbours. 

Did you know? Roosters are not needed to have hens produce eggs for eating, without a rooster, the eggs are infertile.

Equine and Cattle

Horses and cattle must not be kept within 9 metres of a dwelling, school shop, office, factory, workshop, church or other place of public worship, public hall or premises used for the manufacture, preparation, sale or storage of food. Stable floors must be paved with concrete or mineral asphalt (or another equally impervious material) and must be properly graded to drain. Any horse yard or cattle yard must be properly constructed and enclosed to prevent the escape.

Please note from 2012, anyone who keeps or owns livestock in NSW on their land must have a Property Identification Code (PIC). This is a standard enforced by the Department of Primary Industries, for more information visit DPI website.

If you have any questions about keeping livestock contact Council’s Ranger Services team on (02) 4993 4100 or email council@cessnock.nsw.gov.au.