Dog attacks

Pet owners are legally and financially responsible for pet attacks involving their animal and a person or animal. Visit the Animal Welfare Victoria website for more information. 

A dog attack includes any incident where a dog chases, attacks and/or bites a person or animal. It does not have to cause injury. 

The Domestic Animals Act 1994 (Vic) deems the person in control of a dog at the time of an attack as the person responsible (or owner). 

If you need to report a dog attack to Council: 

Make a complaint

For emergency situations involving animal attacks, please call 000 immediately for help.  

Step 1.Gather your information

Make a record of everything relevant about the dog attack, including: 

  • details of the attack (time, location)
  • description of the dog and their owner
  • your contact details
  • photos and the contact details of any witnesses are also helpful.

Step 2.Contact Council

Please call us on 1300 322 322 as soon as possible if you or your pet is attacked by a dog.  

Council's customer service is available 24 hours a day, 7 days week.

Step 3.Assessment and response 

Council will begin an investigation of the reported dog attack.  

We will work with you to gather evidence and decide what action (if any) will be taken against the accused dog and their owner. 

Step 4.What happens next?

Complaints related to dog attacks are assessed on a case by case basis. A Council Officer will contact you to discuss your concerns and further information will be given based on your individual circumstances.