City of Port Phillip is introducing a cat curfew from 9 pm to 6 am. This follows a Council Order passed on 14 April 2022. Penalties apply from 1 July 2022.
The cat curfew is not about keeping your cat indoors, but confining your cat within your property boundary during curfew hours. Please be aware that cats that are not confined during non-curfew hours can still be trapped if the cat trespasses on another resident's property.
A cat curfew is a specified time when cats are not allowed outside of your property boundary.
A cat curfew will alleviate concerns of roaming cats to protect their safety and the safety of local wildlife. The curfew aims to reduce the number of cats impounded, cat fights, cats being hit by cars and unplanned kitten litters.
This was informed by feedback we received during the community consultation on our Domestic Animal Management Plan. 70% of respondents in our community consultation supported the introduction of a cat curfew. It follows a Council Order passed on 14 April 2022, introducing a cat curfew from 9 pm to 6 am. Penalties apply from 1 July 2022.
If a cat is caught during curfew hours, enforcement action can be taken against the cat owner, such as taking the cat to the Council pound and fining the owner. If residents have issues with cats trespassing during curfew hours, the resident can request a cat trap from Council.
Yes. There are 79 councils in Victoria, with the majority of councils having cat containment regulations. At least 37 councils have a cat curfew and several councils are considering introducing one.
Cat owners may be fined as part of any cat curfew if their cat is caught off their property during the curfew hours.
If a cat is trapped during curfew and picked up by officers, then the cat will either be returned to the owners or taken to the Council pound. If the cat is collected from the Council pound, owners will have to pay a reclaim fee. Owners may also face other enforcement actions, such as a fine.
The cat curfew does not apply to the 'semi-owned' or stray cat population. It may assist with these cats if they are deemed a nuisance by property owners and are able to be contained via cat traps.
Our animal management officers will collect any cats that are contained. Our officers will not collect any cats that are not contained in a trap or carrier.
Any pets that are found with our City will be listed on the Lost Dogs Home website - https://dogshome.com/lost-found/lost-a-pet/
Humane traps can be hired to residents free of charge for up to two weeks at a time. Animal Management Officers will inspect your property to determine if your property is suitable to set a trap.
It’s important that cats are trapped in approved traps issued by Council and that the instructions provided by Council are followed.
Captured cats will be transferred to our Council pound. We will check for identification to see if an owner can be located. If no owner is identified, the cats will be given a behavioural assessment to find out if they are suitable for adoption.
Yes, it is legal for someone to trap a trespassing cat.
Resources to assist in transitioning your cat to an indoor lifestyle or outdoor enclosure can be found here: www.safecat.org.au. Some simple methods include:
- Feeding your cat indoors
- Instead of letting your cat back outside as soon as they're finished eating, keep them inside for increasing periods of time
- If you're retraining your cat during the winter, a warm, dry bed to snuggle in may encourage them to stay inside
- installing a cat run, cat enclosure or cat-proof fencing so your cat can roam safely on your property.
Yes, your cat is allowed outdoors, if it remains on your property. Many forms of enclosures are available to buy or make. Cats can be kept:
- In your front yard where the cat is unable to leave your property boundary
- In your back yard where the cat is unable to leave your property boundary
- Inside your property
- In a suitable cat enclosure.
Enrichment activities such as cat towers, keeping plenty of cat toys for them to play with or taking your cat outside on a harness and leash. You can find resources on keeping your cat active here: www.safecat.org.au
All cats over the age of three months are required to be registered under Victorian law. If your cat escapes your property, then these fees will assist in returning your cat to you. They also assist in running the Council pound, which cares for all cats that are brought into the facility, whether they are registered or not. Registering your pets helps us reunite you with them as we will be able to quickly trace them back to you.
The cat curfew aims to reduce the impact of cats on wildlife, cat overpopulation, cats trespassing on to other properties, and cats being hit by cars. Cats can be walked on a lead during curfew hours.
Extensive community consultation was conducted for all animal management changes, including the cat curfew between 9 pm and 6 am.
The DAMP consultation included two rounds of community consultation which consisted of in-person neighbourhood conversation sessions run across the municipality and two online surveys.
Consultation was promoted via Council’s communication channels, including Divercity Online, social media, emails to registered pet owners and key stakeholders, and corflute signage in local parks and other local activity centres throughout the municipality.
The curfew hours will remain the same year-round.
If a cat is trespassing on private property and the resident of the property objects, they are able to trap the cat. This is the case across all of Victoria and is regardless of curfew times.