Every cat and dog 3 months of age and over must be registered with the local council.
All cats and dogs, other than exempt cats and dogs, must be registered by six months of age. The registration fee is a once-only payment, which covers the cat or dog for its lifetime in NSW, regardless of any changes in ownership.
Registration of cats differs between local council areas. Please contact your local council to check if your cat needs to be registered.
Traditionally, dogs have had all the focus, but with desexing and microchipping now mandatory for all dogs and cats born after 1 July 2018, you also need to register your cats.
Some councils charge for cat registrations – check your renewals notice for details.
All domestic cats in Western Australia, over six months of age, will need to be sterilised, microchipped and registered with their local government.
You will need to visit your local council for details. The following website is for the city of Perth.
There is no legislation currently in Tasmania requiring the registration of cats but microchipping is compulsory for cats over the age of six months. Microchipping is available through a vet or the Ten Lives Cat Centre.
Your cat must be registered once they are over the age of three months. You will need to visit your local council for details. The following website is for the city of Darwin.
All cats in the ACT must be microchipped this can be done by the RSPCA or any veterinarian. Cats are required to wear identification on a collar and tag that includes the owner's contact number or address.
Legislative changes are being progressed to introduce cat registration in the ACT from 1 July 2022.
What is a microchip?
Microchips are tiny transponders, about the size of a grain of rice, that can be implanted in your pet’s skin by many veterinarians and animal shelters; some shelters implant one in all pets they place. Microchips are a good back-up option for pet identification but should never be the main one.
The microchips presently used in pets only contain identification numbers. No, the microchip is not a GPS device and cannot track your animal if it gets lost. Although the present technology microchip itself does not contain your pet’s medical information, some microchip registration databases will allow you to store that information in the database for quick reference.
How does a microchip help reunite a lost animal with its owner?
When an animal is found and taken to a shelter or veterinary clinic, one of the first things they do is scan the animal for a microchip. If they find a microchip, and if the microchip registry has accurate information, they can quickly find the animal’s owner.
Will a microchip really make it more likely for me to get my pet back if it is lost?
Definitely! A study of more than 7,700 stray animals at animal shelters showed that dogs without microchips were returned to their owners 21.9% of the time, whereas microchipped dogs were returned to their owners 52.2% of the time. Cats without microchips were reunited with their owners only 1.8% of the time, whereas microchipped cats went back home 38.5% of the time. For microchipped animals that weren’t returned to their owners, most of the time it was due to incorrect owner information (or no owner information) in the microchip registry database – so don’t forget to register and keep your information updated.
Does a microchip replace identification tags?
Absolutely not. Microchips are great for permanent identification that is tamper-proof, but nothing replaces a collar with up-to-date identification tags. If a pet is wearing a collar with tags when it’s lost, it’s often a very quick process to read the tag and contact the owner; however, the information on the tags needs to be accurate and up to date. But if a pet is not wearing a collar and tags, or if the collar is lost or removed, then the presence of a microchip might be the only way the pet’s owner can be found.
I just adopted a pet from the animal shelter. Is it microchipped? How can I find out?
If the shelter scanned the animal, they should be able to tell you if it is microchipped. Some shelters implant microchips into every animal they adopt out, so check with the shelter and find out your new pet’s microchip number so you can get it registered in your name.
Most veterinary clinics have microchip scanners, and your veterinarian can scan your new pet for a microchip when you take your new pet for its veterinary check-up. Microchips show up on radiographs (x-rays), so that’s another way to look for one.
I want to get my pet microchipped. Where do I go?
Most veterinary clinics keep microchips on hand so, it is likely that your pet can be implanted with a microchip the same day as your appointment. Sometimes local shelters or businesses will host a microchipping event too.
Pet Registry Websites
These websites enable you to register your pet's details so that if the unthinkable ever happens your pet could more easily be returned to you.
National Pet Microchip Registry
NSW Pet Registry
Dogs and Cats Online
Central Animal Records: