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


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.

For details and more information on restrictions or required approvals for keeping animals in Wellington, see: Wellington Consolidated Bylaw 2008 - Part 2: Animals



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



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

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.

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. Check the Wellington Consolidated Bylaw 2008, Part 2 Animals for more information.

Choose a location for your poultry carefully. 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 and 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, you will need an operating licence and a certificate of registration. You may also need a resource or building consent. Animal boarding establishments include boarding kennels and catteries.

Certificate of registration
You will 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 Public Health Officer.

 Public Health Officer
 Phone (04) 801 4444

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

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: Dogs


You need the Council's written approval if you want to keep a goat on a property, including rural property.

A Public Health Officer will assess the suitability of your property and the neighbourhood. You will also have to indicate how you'll prevent the goat from causing a nuisance.

To apply for permission, you will need to contact the Public Health Officer.

 Public Health Officer
 Phone (04) 801 4444

Stock impounds

Wellington City Council has contracted Hutt City Animal Services to investigate reports of wandering stock. Animal Services officers have the right to seize and impound any wandering stock.


Stock will not be released until all costs have been paid. Failure to claim impounded stock does not relieve the owner from costs.

First impounding
Subsequent impounding within 1 year
Daily sustenance fee
After hours callout

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
 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.

 Building Compliance and Consents
 Phone (04) 801 4311
 Fax (04) 801 3100
 Postal Address

PO Box 2199
Wellington 6140