Queenstown   (03) 441 0499    |  Wanaka   (03) 443 0024  

Dogs / Animal Control

Dogs, Animal Control

The Animal Control service provided includes responding to complaints of wandering dogs, stock on roads, barking dogs, lost and found services, registration information, patrolling and education programmes.

The Animal Control Unit has a close working relationship with key stakeholders in the community such as the Society for the Protection of Animals (SPCA) and local veterinarians.


Dog control is provided 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

It's fun to own a dog, but its a big responsibility.  Please keep good control of your beloved pets at all times and respect those in the community that do not own dogs.

Contact dog control

  • Queenstown - phone 03 441 0499 (24 hours)
  • Wanaka - phone 03 443 0024 (24 hours)

Armourguard provides dog control services after hours.

Our Animal Control Officers all carry identification cards which also describe their powers under the Dog Control Act 1996.

Dogs in public places

Dogs are permitted on most reserves.  Please keep your dog on a leash at all times in residential and urban areas. 

There are some areas where dogs are prohibited: 

Arrowtown: Buckingham Street between Berkshire and Wiltshire Streets and including the Arrowtown Village Green and Marshall Park.
Queenstown: Beach Street, the Mall, the Village Green and Earnslaw Park
Wanaka: Bremner Bay, between 1 December and 31 March

(This does not apply to companion dogs, guidedogs and hearing ear dogs)

When can a dog be impounded?

Any dog found in a public place and not under control of its owner, or is not registered, can be impounded.

There are some situations where an Animal Control Officer can enter a private property and remove a dog, for example where an Officer has good cause to inspect an offence against the Dog Control Act. 

If your dog is impounded, the following fees will apply:

  • First time- $100.00.
  • Second time - $160.00.
  • Third and subsequent times - $240.00.

What about dangerous dogs?

Never approach a dog if you are concerned for your safety, contact Animal Control immediately. 

Our Animal Control Officers are all trained to handle dangerous dogs and are required to carry specialised equipment with them at all times.  This includes bite sticks, leads, loading ramps, collars and lasso poles.

Our Animal Control Officers do not carry firearms and will call the Police for assistance if needed.

When can a dog be destroyed?

A dog will only be destroyed if:

  • an officer has witnessed it become a threat to public safety
  • it has been mistreated to a point that it is unfit for life
  • it has been abandoned and unable to be re-homed. 

The Courts can also order the destruction of a dog for the same reasons.

Report on Queenstown Lakes District Council's Dog Control Policies and Practices 2009-10

>> Dog Control Policies and Practices 2009-10 (pdf 36.6kb)