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Dog Attacks

  What should I do if a dog attacks me?

If you have seen a dog attack a person or animal, or been attacked by a dog yourself, irrespective of whether the attack happened on public or on private property, you should report it to Blayney Shire council.

A Statement of Attack Form is available for this purpose.

If the attack occurred outside normal Council hours, you may call your local Police Station. Police Officers are authorised officers under the Companion Animals Act 1998, who have a wide range of powers to deal with owners of attacking dogs, including seizing dogs that have attacked.

If you have been the subject of a serious dog attack, you may wish to seek your own legal advice to determine any remedies that may be available to you. You can access free legal advice by telephoning LawAccess NSW, a free Government telephone service providing legal information, advice and referrals, on 1300 888 529 (or TTY 1300 889 529) Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm.

How can I protect my stock from a dog attack? 

In the Companion Animals Act 1993, Section 22 (5) Action to protect persons and property against dogs, states:  

(5)  If a dog that is not under the effective control of some competent person enters any inclosed lands within the meaning of the Inclosed Lands Protection Act 1901 and approaches any animal being farmed on the land, the occupier of the land or any person authorised by the occupier can lawfully injure or destroy the dog if he or she reasonably believes that the dog will molest, attack or cause injury to any of those animals.

Any person who takes action under this authority must advise the Council Ranger for follow up.

Infringement notices can be issued to owners of dogs that rush at/attacks/bites/harasses/chases any person or animal.

Am I legally liable if my dog attacks another animal or person?

As a dog owner, you are liable if your dog attacks a person or another animal.  While the Companion Animals Act 1998 gives certain protection to an owner whose dog attacks as a result of a person or an animal trespassing onto the property on which the dog is kept, other forms of liability may still apply. 

If your dog has attacked a person or another animal, you may wish to seek your own legal advice (see above). 

Can someone else remove my dog from my property?

An authorised Council Officer or Police Officer may enter the part of a property used solely for residential purposes where the owner consents or by virtue of a search warrant.  An authorised officer may also seize a dog at any time within 72 hours of an attack if the owner fails to keep the dog adequately secured or the officer has reasonable grounds to believe that the dog will not be kept under effective control.  If a dog has been seized, the authorised officer must give the owner a notice setting out the reason for the seizure and the place the dog has been taken to.

The Companion Animals Act 1998, in certain circumstances, allows an authorised Council Officer or Police Officer to enter part of a property that is not used solely for residential purposes and seize a dog. These circumstances include where:
  • the owner consents; or
  • the dog has attacked or bitten an animal or person and the owner is not there; or
  • the dog has attacked or bitten an animal or person and the owner cannot bring the dog under effective control.
The intention of this part of the Companion Animals Act 1998 is to give an authorised officer the power to bring under control a dog that has attacked and is at risk of continuing to cause an immediate threat to public safety.

Restricted dogs, proposed restricted dogs and declared dangerous dogs can also be seized and removed from a property in certain circumstances. Contact Council for further information.


Further information including penalties that relate to dogs that are encouraged to, or have, attacked can be found by visiting the Office of Local Government website.


Last modified: 06 Feb 2024