Cat Curfew Proposal

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As part of the Domestic Animal Management Plan 2017-2021, Council is considering introducing a cat curfew to address cases of cats trespassing and nuisance, and to also limit the impact of cats on the environment and local wildlife.

At its meeting on 29 June 2020, Council endorsed a draft proposal of a dusk till dawn (7pm-7am) cat curfew which, if eventually adopted by Council, would mean cats need to be kept indoor overnight.


Council is currently collating all the comments received on the draft proposal which will inform Council’s decision.


What’s happened so far?

The feedback process undertaken for the development of the Domestic Animal Management Plan 2017-2021, included a survey question about the “effectiveness of introducing a cat curfew to control cats from roaming at night”.

A total of 269 responses were received with 49% of respondents indicating that a curfew would be very effective. Respondents were requested to rate responses from 1(not at all effective) to 5 (very effective). With nearly half of respondents indicating that a cat curfew would be very effective in controlling roaming cats at night, further consideration of introducing a cat curfew was included in the Domestic Animal Management Plan 2017-2021.

Feedback on a draft proposal of a dusk till dawn cat curfew was sought from 10 July to 7 August.


Why a Cat Curfew?

Cats are most active at night, particularly at dusk and dawn. This coincides with the activity periods of many species of native wildlife. Wildlife predation is an important factor when considering the pros and cons of a cat curfew. The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) note that, “Cats and dogs are wonderful companion animals. However, they are also very efficient predators of our native wildlife and kill and injure many wild animals every year. Even well fed and cared for cats and dogs instinctively hunt and chase”.

Keeping cats confined at night-time will help protect our Australian wildlife.

The City of Darebin is home to more than 179 species of significant plants and animals. Council works to protect and enhance remnant local native and indigenous vegetation. We have 39 conservation bushland sites within Darebin, which is 24% of the total open space in the municipality.

The Biological Conservation Journal reports that data compiled from 93 recent studies, estimates that feral cats kill 316 million birds a year and domestic cats kill 61 million birds annually. More than 99% are native.

Confining cats at night not only benefits wildlife. Benefits to cats and the community include:

  • Cats that are kept inside at night generally live much longer than cats that are allowed outside.
  • Around 80% of accidents involving cats occur at night.
  • Wandering cats are vulnerable to disease and attacks from other cats or dogs. Feline Aids, which is ultimately fatal for a cat, is transmitted from cat to cat through fighting.
  • Confining cats would help protect our native wildlife
  • Confining cats at night minimises the risk of injury and prevent it from fighting and wandering onto neighbouring properties.
  • Roaming cats also cause disputes and anxiety between neighbours, by causing dogs to bark, by fighting with other cats, defecating in neighbouring gardens and breeding.


In addition, other municipalities in Victoria already have a cat curfew in place, so if a cat curfew is introduced this would bring Darebin in line with the other Councils.

Yarra Ranges Shire Council

Nillumbik Shire Council

Moonee Valley City Council

Mitchell Shire Council

Knox City Council

Whitehorse City Council

City of Greater Bendigo

Maroondah City Council

City of Greater Geelong

Moorabool Shire Council

Bayside City Council

Wyndham City Council

Baw Baw Shire Council

Monash City Council (from 2020)

Kingston City Council

Cardinia Shire Council

City of Casey

East Gippsland Shire Council

City of Wodonga



What’s happening now?

Thank you for your feedback! Council is currently considering the feedback received which will inform the decision of whether or not to adopt the proposal of a cat curfew from dusk till dawn (7pm to 7am).


As part of the Domestic Animal Management Plan 2017-2021, Council is considering introducing a cat curfew to address cases of cats trespassing and nuisance, and to also limit the impact of cats on the environment and local wildlife.

At its meeting on 29 June 2020, Council endorsed a draft proposal of a dusk till dawn (7pm-7am) cat curfew which, if eventually adopted by Council, would mean cats need to be kept indoor overnight.


Council is currently collating all the comments received on the draft proposal which will inform Council’s decision.


What’s happened so far?

The feedback process undertaken for the development of the Domestic Animal Management Plan 2017-2021, included a survey question about the “effectiveness of introducing a cat curfew to control cats from roaming at night”.

A total of 269 responses were received with 49% of respondents indicating that a curfew would be very effective. Respondents were requested to rate responses from 1(not at all effective) to 5 (very effective). With nearly half of respondents indicating that a cat curfew would be very effective in controlling roaming cats at night, further consideration of introducing a cat curfew was included in the Domestic Animal Management Plan 2017-2021.

Feedback on a draft proposal of a dusk till dawn cat curfew was sought from 10 July to 7 August.


Why a Cat Curfew?

Cats are most active at night, particularly at dusk and dawn. This coincides with the activity periods of many species of native wildlife. Wildlife predation is an important factor when considering the pros and cons of a cat curfew. The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) note that, “Cats and dogs are wonderful companion animals. However, they are also very efficient predators of our native wildlife and kill and injure many wild animals every year. Even well fed and cared for cats and dogs instinctively hunt and chase”.

Keeping cats confined at night-time will help protect our Australian wildlife.

The City of Darebin is home to more than 179 species of significant plants and animals. Council works to protect and enhance remnant local native and indigenous vegetation. We have 39 conservation bushland sites within Darebin, which is 24% of the total open space in the municipality.

The Biological Conservation Journal reports that data compiled from 93 recent studies, estimates that feral cats kill 316 million birds a year and domestic cats kill 61 million birds annually. More than 99% are native.

Confining cats at night not only benefits wildlife. Benefits to cats and the community include:

  • Cats that are kept inside at night generally live much longer than cats that are allowed outside.
  • Around 80% of accidents involving cats occur at night.
  • Wandering cats are vulnerable to disease and attacks from other cats or dogs. Feline Aids, which is ultimately fatal for a cat, is transmitted from cat to cat through fighting.
  • Confining cats would help protect our native wildlife
  • Confining cats at night minimises the risk of injury and prevent it from fighting and wandering onto neighbouring properties.
  • Roaming cats also cause disputes and anxiety between neighbours, by causing dogs to bark, by fighting with other cats, defecating in neighbouring gardens and breeding.


In addition, other municipalities in Victoria already have a cat curfew in place, so if a cat curfew is introduced this would bring Darebin in line with the other Councils.

Yarra Ranges Shire Council

Nillumbik Shire Council

Moonee Valley City Council

Mitchell Shire Council

Knox City Council

Whitehorse City Council

City of Greater Bendigo

Maroondah City Council

City of Greater Geelong

Moorabool Shire Council

Bayside City Council

Wyndham City Council

Baw Baw Shire Council

Monash City Council (from 2020)

Kingston City Council

Cardinia Shire Council

City of Casey

East Gippsland Shire Council

City of Wodonga



What’s happening now?

Thank you for your feedback! Council is currently considering the feedback received which will inform the decision of whether or not to adopt the proposal of a cat curfew from dusk till dawn (7pm to 7am).