Stray dogs in the District

Edition: March 2024

Did you know the Council has a statutory duty to recover any stray dogs found in the District?

Dog photo

That means we handle the recovery of dogs found without their owners. Annual provision for strays including their collection, kennelling, rehoming, microchipping and also veterinary care transportation, costs the Council around £24,000 per year.

We work with an approved kennels and run a 24-hour collection service when a report of a stray dog is received.

If the dog has an identity chip or tag we will use that information to try to reunite it with its owners. If it is unclaimed after seven days, it will be microchipped and passed to a rescue centre. Owners collecting a stray dog will have to pay a kennelling fee.

Responsible dog ownership

Caring for a pet is a big responsibility and can be expensive. By law all dogs must be microchipped and have a collar with a contact name and address. This gives them the best chance of being identified and returned if they get lost. If you move house or change your telephone number, remember to update their tag and tell the microchip database you're registered with to update the records for your pets.

If you are an owner who is struggling with the cost of pet food or healthcare or are finding looking after your pet difficult, there is help available. Abandoning a pet is never the right answer.

The RSPCA and Dogs Trust have some good information on dog food banks, behaviour support and animal care on a budget. Also check out our Neighbourhood Wardens’ Facebook pages for safe and happy dog events featuring dog behaviourists.
If you need to rehome your pet, a reputable rescue centre will be able to help without judgement.

If you have lost your dog

Please report your lost dog to Horsham District Council on: 01403 215641 or email:

What if I find a stray?

If you find a stray dog, please report it to our kennels on: 07512 089777 so we can help. Only approach if the animal is calm, and stay clear if the dog is displaying aggressive behaviour.

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