Keeping and exercising dogs
  • Last updated:
  • 09 Aug 2021

Dog owners are responsible for their pets. They must make sure that their dogs do not:

  • create a nuisance
  • endanger other animals or people
  • roam outside their property.

If dogs leave the property they must be on a lead or be supervised in off-leash areas. All dogs must be registered with council.

See the top tips to become a responsible dog owner.

Maximum number of dogs

Local laws permit two dogs per property. In unit complexes you must check with the body corporate whether animals are allowed. If you want to keep more than two dogs you must apply to council. Complete and return the following form.

Off-leash and prohibited areas

All dogs must be kept on a leash when in public areas, unless in a designated off-leash area

When using off-leash areas on the Sunshine Coast.

  • Dogs must be near their owner and responsive to their commands.
  • Owners must carry a leash with them at all times.
  • Dogs must not interfere with any other people.
  • Regulated dogs are not allowed to be in off-leash areas.
  • Dog droppings must be removed and disposed of properly.
  • Dogs are not allowed in children's playgrounds or picnic/barbecue areas.
  • Dogs are not allowed to be off-leash on sports fields.
  • Ensure the Council registration tag is worn. 

Council also has areas where all dogs are not allowed.

Animals in outdoor dining areas

The rules for animals in outdoor dining areas are outlined under the Queensland Food Act 2006. Visit Queensland Health website to view the below fact sheets.

  • Fact sheet #8 - Animals in food premises.
  • Fact sheet #49 - Dogs in outdoor dining areas - information for food businesses.
  • Fact sheet #50 - Dogs in outdoor dining areas - information for customers.

Where dogs are allowed in an outdoor dining area, the business owner has the right to refuse or allow dogs to be present. This is done at the business owner's discretion and does not apply to assistance dogs. If you bring your dog to an outdoor dining area remember:

  • your dog is your responsibility
  • keep your dog under control
  • remove your dog from the premises if you become aware of the dog's need to urinate or defecate
  • clean up after your dog
  • inform a staff member of any dog waste on the premises.

For more information please visit the Toolbox website.

Assistance dog

An 'assistance dog' refers to:

  • guide dog
  • a dog trained to assist a person in activities where hearing is required
  • any other animal trained to assist a person to alleviate the effect of a disability.

This definition is contained in section 9 of the Disability Discrimination Act 1992.

Working dog

A 'working dog' refers to a dog usually kept or proposed to be kept:

  • on rural land; and
  • by an owner who is a primary producer, or a person engaged or employed by a primary producer; and
  • primarily for the purpose of 
    • droving, protecting, tending or working stock; or
    • being trained in droving, protecting, tending. or working stock
  • Working dog fact sheet[274KB]

Fencing requirements

Dog owners must prevent their dogs from roaming and causing a nuisance. Fenced enclosures are required to contain dogs on properties. The fence must be constructed in a manner to stop animals from escaping.