Pay attention to the signs at your favourite spots
Dogs in urban areas: Dogs must always be kept on lead while in urban areas like town centres and roads. Our friendly Bylaws Officers enforce this simple rule and are often able to provide leads to dog walkers who don’t have one on them.
Dogs around playgrounds: Dogs should never be in a children's playground. Our rules state dogs are prohibited from children's play areas at all times. This rule was put in place to avoid harm to both children and dogs, and to protect the sanitation of these sites.
Dogs on beaches: Please look for signs at beach access ways that indicate places where dogs are allowed off-lead, places where dogs must remain on-lead, and places where dogs are temporarily prohibited.
Our Council makes it easy to stay up to date with the rules at your favourite beach. Look for these signs when you take a walk and ensure you stick to rules for the area.
Green signs denote exercise areas: You can have your dog off-leash but under control at all dates and times.
Orange signs denote restricted areas: We use the restricted term for the summer period and holiday weekends. It means that there are restrictions around where you can take your dog during certain dates and times. We also have some areas that dogs are restricted from all year round.
Red signs denote prohibited areas: This means no dogs at all. We have some areas that are prohibited all year round, but most are during the dotterel nesting season, so the prohibition is always from Labour Weekend to 1 March.
Summaries of the rules by area
The most important rule to remember is that dogs must be on a lead unless specified otherwise. So, when in doubt, put your dog on a lead. To help you understand the local rules, below is a summary of the rules for each Community Board area:
- Coromandel-Colville Community Board area(PDF, 279KB) - Big Sandy Bay, Carey Road, Hannafords Bay, Herds Bay, Little Bay, Little Sandy Bay, Long Bay, Oamaru Bay, Otautu Bay, Patukirikiri Reserve, Port Jackson, Tucks Bay, Waikawau Bay (east coast), Wyuna Bay
- Mercury Bay Community Board area(PDF, 287KB) - Brophys/Ohuka Beach, Buffalo Beach, Cooks Beach, Hahei Beach, Hot Water Beach, Kuaotunu, Rings Beach, Matarangi, Opito Bay, Otama Beach, Wainuiototo/New Chums Beach, Whangapoua Beach, Wharekaho
- Tairua-Pauanui Community Board area (PDF, 278KB)- Pauanui Ocean Beach, Tairua Harbour Estuary, Tairua Ocean Beach, Otara Bay, Boat Harbour Beach
- Thames Community Board area(PDF, 279KB) - Burke Street Beach, Burke Street Reserve, Kuranui Bay, Little Waikawau (west coast), Ngarimu Bay, Ruamahunga Bay, Tapu, Tararu, Te Mata, Te Puru, Thornton Bay, Waiomu Bay, Whakatete Bay
- Whangamata Community Board area(PDF, 279KB) - Onemana Beach, Opoutere Beach, Heatherington Road Reserve, Park Avenue Reserve, Patiki Bay Reserve, Whangamata Beach, Otahu Estuary
Check the Dog Control Bylaw(PDF, 4MB) for further information.
For information on dog access to conservation land check www.doc.govt.nz.