If you want to keep animals on residential properties, you must comply with Part 2 of the Wellington Consolidated Bylaw.

For details of any restrictions or required approvals for keeping animals in Wellington, see:
Wellington Consolidated Bylaw 2008 - Part 2: Animals

Goats on a hillside.

Goats on a hillside

Keeping animals

 Aside from the exceptions below, you don't need permission to keep animals in Wellington as long as they do not become a nuisance, dangerous, offensive or unhealthy to those living around your property.

Guidelines for keeping bees and birds


If you want to keep bees in your garden, the position of your hive is important. Bees establish a single flight path and drop wax and waste along their way. Hives on private property must not affect neighbouring properties and public spaces - the Council's Environmental Health Officers will respond to complaints where bees might be causing any nuisance or danger to other residents.



Guidelines for Community Beekeeping on Public Land (172KB PDF)



Guidelines for Community Beekeeping on Public Land (6KB RTF)

If you want to establish a hive on Council-administered land (e.g. at a community garden), you will need a licence. See our guidelines to find out more about what conditions need to be met to receive a licence.

Contact the National Beekeepers' Association about beekeeping registration and disease prevention in your area.


You do not need a licence to keep birds, including domestic birds, poultry, game, caged birds or birds kept for display. However, there are welfare and health requirements when keeping birds. Refer to the Wellington Consolidated Bylaw 2008, Part 2 Animals, above.

Choose a location for keeping poultry. Compact residential neighbourhoods are often unsuitable. The Council receives many complaints about birds and often has to remove noisy roosters.

Keep fowl houses and aviaries clean so they do not attract flies, rats, mice and stoats. For more details on the conditions of keeping animals, see:
Other Activities - Wellington Consolidated Bylaw 2008, Part 2: Animals

Animals / situations that require a licence

You will need to get Council permission to operate an animal boarding establishment or to keep dogs or goats.

Animal boarding establishments

If you operate or want to set up an animal boarding establishment then you need an operating licence. Animal boarding establishments include boarding kennels and catteries. Check through the following to find out what you have to do.

Resource consent
You may need a resource consent if there are environmental impacts or land zoning changes. Discuss your proposal with the Resource Consent team.

Development, Planning and Compliance
Wellington City Council

Phone (04) 801 3590
Fax (04) 801 3100
Postal Address PO Box 2199
Wellington 6140

Building consent
You may need a building consent for construction, plumbing or drainage work. Discuss your proposal with the Building Customer Services team.

Location map.



More information

Building Compliance and Consents
Wellington City Council

Phone (04) 801 4311
Fax (04) 801 3100
Postal Address PO Box 2199
Wellington 6140
Street Address 101 Wakefield Street
Wellington 6011
Monday – Friday:

8.00am – 5pm

Certificate of registration
You need a certificate of registration to operate an animal boarding establishment.

To discuss your proposal and get advice about how to prevent problems with animal waste disposal or other nuisance issues, contact an Environmental Health Officer on (04) 801 4444 or email

Welfare standards
Boarding establishments must comply with the government's animal welfare code. Consult the code to find out what standards you need to meet:
Code of Recommendations and Minimum Standards for the Welfare of Animals in Boarding Establishments - Biosecurity NZ

For more information on pet boarding standards, see:
Pet Boarding Code of Practice and Forms - AsureQuality


For detailed information about keeping dogs, registration, exercise areas, and dog control, see:


You need the Council's written approval if you want to keep a goat on a property (including rural property). An Environmental Health Officer will assess the suitability of the property and neighbourhood. You will also have to indicate how you'll prevent the goat from causing a nuisance.

To apply for permission, contact Public Health (Building Consents & Licensing Services) on (04) 801 4444 or email

More information

If you have further questions, call (04) 499 4444 and ask to speak to an Environmental Health Officer.