Keeping a dog in St. Catharines


Owning a dog can be very rewarding and even offers many health benefits, such as more physical activity and less stress. But, caring for a dog is much more than daily walks and keeping Fido's food and water bowls full. The City of St. Catharines has a by-law relating to the keeping of dogs to ensure all dog owners are responsible pet owners.

License your dog

The City's by-law relating to the keeping of dogs requires all dog owners in the City of St. Catharines to purchase dog licences for their pets. The City of St. Catharines and DocuPet are working together to launch a new dog licensing program allowing residents to purchase dog licences online.

Licence your dog with DocuPet

Purchase City dog licenses in person at Citizens First on the second floor at City Hall (50 Church St.).

Dogs Running at Large and Leashing

  • All dogs in the City must be leashed or otherwise physically controlled when in any place other than the premises of the owner
  • The leash is not to exceed three metres and must be secured by the handler
  • Complaints should be directed to: Niagara Region Animal Services Inc. 905.682.0767

Maximum number of dogs

As per the City's by-law, there is a limit of three dogs per dwelling in the city of St. Catharines.

Barking Dogs

Forward complaints, in writing, providing the facts and identifying the name and address of the dog owner to:

Niagara Region Animal Services Inc.

Removal of Animal Waste

Dog owners must remove feces from public and private property immediately. Forward complaints, in writing, providing the facts and identifying the name and address of the dog owner to:

Niagara Region Animal Services Inc.

Muzzling of Vicious Dogs

  • Complainant must complete and sign an affidavit of the facts surrounding the alleged vicious dog bite to another domestic animal or person.
  • Affidavit must identify the dog, the owner and the owner's address.
  • The City Clerk determines and declares a dog to be vicious and notifies the owner by Registered Mail, requiring the dog to be muzzled and restrained.
  • The owner of the vicious dog can apply for a public hearing held before City Council to appeal the declaration.

Concerns about Abuse/Neglect or Animals in Distress

Concerns related to animal abuse, neglect or animals in distress should be brought to the attention of the Province's Ontario Animal Protection Call Centre at 1-833-9-ANIMAL (264625).

In emergency cases where life is in immediate danger contact 911 (Emergency Only).

Copyright © 2014 The Corporation of the City of St. Catharines