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Dog Attacks

If you are attacked or witness an attack by a dog on private or public property please report it as soon as possible on 8930 0600. This will help us to respond quickly and effectively.

We rely on members of the public to report all dog attacks especially those that have occurred on private property. Reporting all incidents helps us address problems appropriately.

What is a Dog Attack?

Council has established and defined two levels of dog attack.
(55A Attack by dogs)

Level One:

The dog bites, or holds a person or animal in its mouth, whether or not the holding is accompanied by biting, shaking, pulling or pushing or the person or animal suffers an injury, physical or otherwise.

Level Two:

The dog approaches, chases, menaces, harasses or rushes at a person or animal in a manner endangering or causing fear, alarm or distress to the person or animal whether or not there is contact.

Reporting a Dog Attack

If you are attacked by a dog on private or public property please report it to Council as soon as possible. This will help us to respond quickly and effectively.

To report an attack, please use online form or call

08 8930 0600

You will need to provide certain details about the event, including the:

  • date
  • time
  • location
  • and a sequence of events.

The Council Ranger will talk you through the appropriate complaint process.


If your dog has attacked, you are guilty of an offence and Council has a range of options at its disposal. (Section 69 Dog attack)

  • As the owner, you may be prosecuted and fined or jailed.
  • All dogs that have committed an attack are placed on the Declared Dog Register as a category one dog or category two dog.
  • In the event of a level one attack Council may prosecute the owner of the dog, issue penalty infringements, impose sanctions and place conditions on the dogs registration.
  • In more serious instances Council may also forcibly remove and evict the dog from the Darwin Municipality.

Declared Dogs Register

Council maintains a declared dog register which records the details of dogs that have committed certain acts, including attacks. Their owner’s details are also recorded. If your dog is placed on the Declared Dog Register, extra conditions are placed on your dog’s registration. These conditions relate to the dog’s care and control.

The conditions may include:

  • Placing signage at premises where your dog is usually kept. The words ‘Warning Dangerous Dog’ must be clearly legible and visible from all boundaries of the property.
  • Only allowing your dog in public places when it is muzzled, in the care of a person greater than the age of 17 and that person can effectively control the dog therefore, preventing it from further attacking.
  • Registering the dog as a declared dog and paying the appropriate fees.
  • Microchipping the dog.
  • You will also be required to comply with any other conditions imposed by Council. (55B Declared dog category 1 and 55C Declared dog category 2)

Prescribed breeds

Darwin does not have a prescribed breed register.

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