Stray and lost dog responsibilities

A stray dog is defined as 'any unattended dog in a public place'. A public place means on the road/highway or any other place where the public are entitled or permitted to have access.

The way we deal with stray dogs will change from 21 November 2022. Our contractor, SDK, will collect stray dogs which have been captured or tied up. They cannot catch loose dogs and will only collect dogs found and currently located within the Woking Borough area.

How we manage stray dogs

  • The stray dog will be returned directly to the owner without going to kennels, if the owner can be identified and contacted via the information held on the microchip or by other means. The owner will be charged a release fee of £75 which includes a statutory fine.
  • If the release fee is not paid or the owner cannot be contacted, the dog will be taken to kennels for up to seven days. The owner will be charged additional fees for kennel costs when the dog is claimed.
  • All kennel fees must be paid in addition to the statutory fine, collection any veterinary or other reasonable expenses incurred before the dog can be reunited with its owner.
  • Depending on the availability of kennel space, stray dogs may be taken to secure kennels up to 45 miles from Woking borough. 

Dog owners' responsibilities

By law, all dogs must:

  • Be microchipped and registered on an approved database.
  • Wear a collar and tag giving the owner's name, address and telephone number. This requirement is in addition to microchipping your dog. 

In the event that your dog strays, a microchip can speed up the process of being reunited with your dog and at cheaper rate. 

It is important that the contact details are kept up to date. For example, if you move house or change phone number, you must contact your microchip supplier and update your details on its database 

Owners may be fined if their dog(s) are not correctly identified using an up to date microchip.

Read more about why and how to microchip your dog