Amendments to Dog Control Act 2000

​​​​​Penalties for dog owners with dogs who attack little penguins in certain locations have been increased.

​The increase has been made through amendments to the Dog Control Act 2000, in response to a recent spate of dog attacks on little penguins. These amendments were passed in Parliament in November 2019.

Download the information below as PDF:

  Penguins and the Dog Control Act   (477Kb)

What you need to know

The Dog Control Act now includes additional penalties for dog attacks on ‘sensitive wildlife’ in ‘sensitive areas’.

On 25 December 2019, the Minister declared little penguins to be ‘sensitive wildlife’. The Minister has also declared the following areas to be 'sensitive':

  • Low Head Promontory from Beach Road
  • Bicheno from the northern end of Rice Beach to the southern end of Dension Beach. Diamond Island and Governor Island are also included.
  • Wynyard/Ulverstone from Don Heads to the eastern side of Lillico and continuing west to Burntwood Point. 
  • Stanley (all land north of the neck of the peninsula roughly half way between the Stanley Highway intersections with West Inlet Track and East Inlet Track).
See maps below.

If your dog attacks sensitive wildlife in a sensitive area you are guilty of an offence and a penalty of up to 30 penalty units applies if charged. (Currently 1 penalty unit = $168.)

Existing penalties still apply​​​

Penalties under the Dog Control Act that existed prior to these amendments still apply. Some of these offences include and attract the following penalties:

  • Dog at Large - up to 5 penalty units
  • Dog attacking animals - up to 20 penalty units
  • Dog attacking a person - up to 30 penalty units
  • Dogs found in or taken into a Council declared Prohibited Area – up to 20 penalty units
(Currently 1 penalty unit = $168.)

*increased penalties apply to those dogs declared as dangerous dogs.

See the Dog Control Act 2000 for all penalties that apply to dog owners if they are guilty of an offence under the Act.

Sensitive Areas - Maps​​​

​The Minister has declared the following 'sensitive areas'. These maps are also available as pdf documents.

Low Head Sensitive Area​​​

  Low Head Sensitve Area Map   (448Kb)

Bicheno​​​ Sensitive Area

  Bicheno Sensitive Area Map   (744Kb)


Wynya​​rd/Ulverstone Sensitive Area 1

  Wynyard Ulverstone Sensitive Area Map 1   (1Mb)

Wynyar​​d/Ulverstone Sensitive Area 2

  Wynyard Ulverstone Sensitive Area Map 2   (2Mb)

Wynyard/Ulversto​​ne Sensitive Area 3

  Wynyard Ulverstone Sensitive Area Map 3   (1Mb)


Stanle​y Sensitive Area​

  Stanley Sensitive Area Map   (744Kb)


Wildlife Management Branch
Level 8, 59 Liverpool St
GPO Box 44
Phone: 03 6165 4305
Fax: 03 6173 0253

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