We're conducting a review of the Borough's 'dogs on beaches' laws to see if we need to make changes. Through the initial part of this review, a proposal has emerged to remove the restrictions preventing dogs on beaches during the summer period. This change would simplify our dog laws and make it easier for people to spend quality time with their pets in the Borough. The consultation period for this proposal has now closed. We'll provide the results from the survey in an engagement report later this month.
Currently, dogs are prohibited from almost all beaches in the Borough for most of summer. From 15 December until the last day of February, from 9:00am until 8:00pm each day, dogs are not permitted on any beach in the Borough of Queenscliffe, excluding Narrows Beach (which is reserved specifically for dog use). Prohibiting owners and their dogs from safely using the local beaches for eleven hours per day does not appear to reflect the preferred beach use patterns of our locals and prevents them from accessing most of our beautiful coastline during the most favourable time of year.
Council is proposing to remove the restrictions preventing dogs on beaches during the summer period, allowing them to be walked on-leash in most areas year-round, in addition to the off-leash (under effective control) area at Narrows Beach. By simplifying these laws, it would be easier for residents and visitors to spend quality time with their pets while keeping beachgoers and the natural habitat safe.
Our residents and visitors already demonstrate an extremely high compliance rate with local dog laws, and removing these restrictions would reward good behaviour while further promoting the area to dog owners. However, we also understand that we have a responsibility to protect our fragile local wildlife, as well as those in the community that may wish to enjoy the beach without dogs present. Therefore, Council is also asking you to consider and nominate an appropriate stretch of coastline where we could provide a year-round designated dog-free area for beachgoers.
Thank you for taking part in our survey, which will help assist Council in its decision-making. The consultation period for this proposal closed at 11:59pm on Wednesday 16 November 2022. We'll provide the results from the survey in an engagement report later this month.
19 October 2022
16 November 2022
Late November 2022
Results announced, next steps