Offshore Living

Animals - updated April 2017

Given our proximity to Ku-Ring-Gai Chase National Park, Council has specific regulations relating to companion animals in its Development Control Plans - DCP21. The keeping of cats, rabbits and ferrets is discouraged. The toll on wildlife is too great.

Owners who wish to keep dogs must prevent them from roaming, including on tracks, trails or beaches. You can, however, walk your dog on the public tracks outside the National Park (as marked), subject to the usual companion animal regulations of having dogs on leashes at all times and the requirement to clean up any deposits. Dogs are not permitted on Pittwater beaches as their presence frightens aquatic birds preventing them from foraging, nesting and mating.

The DCP is designed to provide guidance to persons carrying out development on land in Pittwater. Where development consent is required for development in the Lower Western Foreshore Locality (LWFL) such as to build or modify a dwelling house, Council may impose conditions on that consent, including the restrictions in D8.12 Companion Animals, provided such conditions are valid in the circumstances.

Your responsible animal ownership is welcomed and is a reflection on all other responsible animal owners in the community.

Ku-Ring-Gai Chase National Park

Pets Prohibited

Pets and domestic animals (other than certified assistance animals) are not permitted.

See the OEH pets in parks policy for more information.


If you have visiting dogs please ensure your guests are aware of the requirement of using a lead outside of your property, the permitted walking areas, and the need to pickup after their animal. Being in bushland does not mean they can let their animal roam.

National Park Maps

Key: Green area's denote - National Park



Why aren’t dogs allowed at national parks and on beaches?

Few things are more sacred to us than our dogs, so when we’re told that they’re not allowed in national parks or on beaches, you may feel personally offended. Rest assured, however, that any restrictions are in place for good reason.

We like to take our best friends everywhere, and what’s more, they like to come with us. However, a line has been drawn in the sand when it comes to beaches and national parks. While it may seem outrageous that dogs be banished from some of our environment’s most wondrous natural playgrounds, there are actually a number of good reasons why this is the case.

Danger to the environment

While recreation is often encouraged in national parks, it’s worth remembering that national parks exist primarily for the preservation of the natural environment. Therefore, any activities that negatively impact on the environment are banned. These are the main reasons why dogs aren’t allowed in national parks:

  • Even the most docile dogs are predatory animals and are therefore a threat to protected wildlife
  • Native animals are vulnerable to diseases that dogs may carry
  • Barking and scents left by dogs can scare wildlife and attract other predatory animals

When it comes to beaches, the main concern for the environment is dog owners that don’t pick up after their dog. Though this may only reflect a minority of people, it tends to be more common when dogs are let off the leash in areas like beaches. There is also the issue of our canines possibly crushing wildlife in rivers; although this is something humans need to watch out for too.

Another concern is the containment of dogs in crowded areas. Beaches are people-magnets, and – believe it or not – not all people like or feel safe around dogs.

Danger to our dogs

  • National parks frequently use poisonous ground baiting to target introduced species such as foxes. These baits are toxic and can sadly be fatal to our beloved canines.
  • National parks are full of shrubbery – the perfect environment for paralysis ticks, which are potentially fatal to dogs.
  • Without access to water and shade, dogs can develop heatstroke at the beach.
  • If the sand is particularly hot, your dog’s pads can burn and blister.
  • Wet rocks and moss are very slippery, and your dog can cut their pads on sharp rocks and/or oyster shells at the beach.
  • Excessive consumption of seawater can upset your dog’s stomach and cause dehydration or salt toxicity.


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