Microchipping and registration
All dog and cat owners are required to take two steps to protect their pet for life:
- Permanent identification through microchipping which can be done by your veterinarian, RSPCA or Council Rangers
- Lifetime registration
You may also need to obtain an annual permit in addition to the lifetime pet registration.
Dogs and cats must be microchipped by the time they are 12 weeks old. This includes animals to be sold or given away.
It's an offence to sell or give a pet away that is not microchipped. If you are buying or have been given a companion animal, make sure it’s microchipped. It’s the seller’s responsibility to microchip the animal before it goes to its new home.
If your pet isn’t microchipped, contact your local vet or Council Customer Services on 02 4993 4100 to book an appointment with a Ranger.
Fees may apply. Read our Fees and Charges for more information.
Free microchipping events
As part of our service to the community, Council holds free microchipping events for residents of the Cessnock LGA. Find out about the latest event.
Dogs and cats must be lifetime registered by the time they are 6 months old.
You can register your pet through The Office of Local Government online Pet Registry, in person at a Service NSW access point or at Council.
You need a microchip number to register an animal. If you don’t know the microchip number of your pet, contact your local vet or our customer service team to book an appointment with a ranger.
Fees to register an animal vary. Additional fees apply if the animal hasn't been desexed by the relevant desexing age. Read our Fees and Charges for more information.
There is no fee to register a working dog.
Updating your details on the NSW Pet Registry
If you have recently moved or have a new phone number – how do you update your pets details?
- you can create your own profile on the NSW Pet Registry. The Registry allows you to update your contact details, report your pet missing, change the ownership of pets, and pay the lifetime registration and annual permit fee (if applicable). Click here to set up your own profile, or complete the online Council form
- contact Council’s friendly Customer Service Team on (02) 4993 4100
I am welcoming a new cat/dog into my family. How do I make sure their microchip is in my name?
- This can be done via the NSW Pet Registry by logging into your profile and ‘claiming’ your pet
When you purchase or adopt a companion animal, it is important to ensure that the breeder or previous owner sends the local Council a signed and complete Change of Owner/Details C3A form.
If you sell or give away a companion animal, it is your responsibility as the 'old owner' to update the new owner's details on the Companion Animals Register at your local council, otherwise penalties may apply. This can be done by submitting a C3A form. Both the old owner and new owner are required to sign the form.
The best way to ensure your pet is returned to you quickly and safely should they stray from home is to make sure they are wearing a collar and tag. This helps, particularly if your pet is found by a member of the community outside of Council’s core business hours. This prevents any delay in your pet being reunited with you.
From 1 July 2020, you will be required to get an annual permit (in addition to the lifetime pet registration) if:
Visit the Office Local Government website for details on the annual permits, including fees.
A working dog is a dog used primarily for the purpose of droving, tending, working or protecting stock, and includes a dog being trained as a working dog.
All working dogs must be microchipped and registered.
There is a no fee to register a working dog. To determine your eligibility, fill the Working Dog Assessment Form.(PDF, 116KB)
If a working dog is impounded, registration fees become applicable and must be paid prior to the release of the animal. More information on our Lost and Found Animals page.