Dog as a Pet
Before acquiring a dog as your pet, it is important to first get educated on the rules and regulations of owning a dog in Singapore. Singapore has laws related to pet ownership and has the Centre for Animal Welfare and Control (CAWC) setup in 1995 to attend to all matters relating to animal welfare and administration.
Over here, all dogs above the age of 3 months must be licensed. The CAWC provides dog licencing services. Together with a one-time registration fee of $6.50 for each new application, the current licencing fee for male dog and a sterilized female dog is $14. The licencing fee for an unsterilised female dog is $70. Each licence is valid for a year and must be renewed upon expiry.
The dog licence will be issued together with a licence badge which must be securely attached by means of a collar to the neck of the dog. Dog licences comes with conditions that are to be met by the owner. Breaching of any dog licencing conditions is an offence under the Animals and Birds (Dog Licensing and Control) Rules. This can result in the impoundment of the dog, a fine of up to $500, and/or revocation of the dog licence.
Below are the dog licensing conditions:
Firstly, dogs must be on leash and properly controlled in the public areas. They should not be allowed to stray and cause unnecessary annoyance to the public by behaviours such as uncontrolled barking, defecating in public places, chasing vehicles or passers-by. The dog licence may be revoked or renewal of licence may be disallowed if the owner allows the dog to cause nuisance.
Secondly, Categories A and B dogs which are classified as potentially dangerous or fierce should be muzzled and be on leash when in a public place.
Dogs classified under Category A are Pit Bull (includes American Pit Bull Terrier, American Staffordshire Terrier, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, the American Bulldog), Akita, Neapolitan Mastiff, Tosa and crosses of Pit Bull, Akita, Neapolitan Mastiff or Tosa.
Dogs classified under Category B are Bull Mastiff, Bull Terrier, Doberman Pinscher, German Shepherd Dog or related Shepherd Dog breeds, Rottweiler and Perro de Presa Canario.
From August 1991, dogs from Category A are no longer allowed to be imported into Singapore. Existing dogs must be sterilized and permanently implanted with microchip for identification. A third-party insurance policy of $100,000 on the dog must also be taken up by the owner. In addition, owners are also to put up a $5,000 cash bond which will be returned in the event when the dog dies or is not residing in Singapore anymore. However, the bond will be forfeited if the owner allows the dog to be in public places without a leash or muzzle.
Owners are also to inform the CAWC in the event if there is a change in dog ownership, address and if the dog has been lost or has died.
The residential area must also be put into consideration before one takes up the ownership of dog. The current HDB rules allow only 1 dog of a toybreed or its cross that stands at 40 cm at the shoulders and weighs 10kg or less per residential unit. It is an offence under HDB regulation to keep more than one dog of an approved breed. The AVA is also assisting HDB in ensuring that dog licences are only issued to dogs that are qualified to be kept in HDB premises. Private premises are allowed to keep up to 3 dogs.
A good and responsible owner not only takes good care of the dog, but also looks after the public environment that revolves around the dog. Equipping your dog with good behaviour and socializing skills also makes it good neighbourhood pet, well received by the public.