What do I do if I find an animal?

If you find a dog call your local Council immediately - please see contact details below

Some animals may require daily medication, or may bite out of fear. Some animals may even carry communicable diseases that could put your family and your pets at risk. It is an offence to keep another person's dog and most important that Council collect the dog from you as soon as possible, no-one is going to look for their dog at your house. The dog may be microchipped which can enable Council to reunite the dog with its owner.

Council contact details

City of Playford

8256 0333

City of Adelaide

8203 7203

City of West Torrens

8416 6333

City of Unley

8372 5111

City of Port Adelaide Enfield

8405 6600

City of Salisbury

8406 8222

Campbelltown City Council

8366 9222

City of Norwood, Payneham St Peters

8366 4555

City of Charles Sturt

8408 1111

City of Tea Tree Gully

08 8397 7444

City of Burnside

8366 4200

City of Prospect

8269 5355

For the full list of council contact details visit the LGA Website

View OUR LOSt PET profiles

Where the owner cannot be found, you may be able to lodge an expression of interest with the appropriate council officer/employee to adopt the dog once the dog becomes available for adoption at the AWL.

Please contact your local council if you find a stray or owned cat. The council will be able to give you instructions on what to do from this point. (Most councils have a 24 hour call back system)  After you have contacted your local council you can contact the AWL about options on what to do next.

It is important that you ask yourself these questions:

  1. Is this cat bothering me or my community?
  2. Is this cat in reasonable health, seems spritely, isn’t too thin?
  3. Do I actually need to remove this cat from this environment?
  4. Could I be supported to get this cat/s desexed and allow it to remain where it is?
  5. Am I absolutely positive that no one else is actually ‘looking after’ this cat?

If you believe this cat is lost and cannot find it's owner/s View OUR LOSt PET profiles as you may be able to contact the owner direct to reunite them with their cat.

AWL Paper Cat Collars

If you would like to assist the cat, please use the AWL Paper Cat Collars. These collars have been developed to create better outcomes for cats in our communites. Read more about the collars and download the template by clicking the buttons below. 

Paper Cat Collars Info Sheet  Download Paper Cat Collars

Contact our team for more information on this.

What do I do if I cannot get near these cats?

If you still feel that you need to remove this cat or cats please contact your local council.

What are the differences between a stray, a semi-owned, unowned, and feral cats?

Cat definitions

Domestic cats


  • Identified with and cared for by a specific person, and are directly dependent on humans.
  • The cats are usually sociable although sociability varies.


  • Fed or provided with other care by people who do not consider they own them.
  • The cats are of varying sociability with many socialised to humans and may be associated with one or more households.


  • Indirectly dependent on humans with some having casual and temporary interactions with humans.
  • The cats are of varying sociability, including some who are unsocialised to humans, and some may live in groups in common aggregation sites

Feral cats


These cats are unowned, unsocialised, have no relationship with or dependence on humans, and reproduce in the wild, independently from the domestic cat population.

Other commonly used terms

“Community cats”

  • The term used to refer to semi-owned or unowned cats.
  • Cats of varying sociability may have casual and temporary interactions with humans and indirect dependence on humans, or long-term interactions, and direct dependence on humans.
  • They live in areas in cities/towns where they can scavenge food or are fed by one or more people

“Stray cats”

A term which is often used to refer to unowned or semi-owned cats, but ‘stray’ refers to the activity of cats that roam, not an ownership status.


Please call your local vet or the AWL on (08) 8348 1300 as soon as possible.

Rabbits have specific dietary requirements so unless you are aware of how to care for a rabbit they are much better in the care of a professional

Most rabbits are not tattooed so your local vet or the AWL will be able to check for a microchip.

For urgent information or advice contact Fauna Rescue's 24-hour hotlines:

  • Bat Rescue Hotline (24hrs): 0475 132 093
  • Koala Rescue Hotline (24hrs): 1300 562 527
  • Duckling Rescue Hotline (24hrs): 0412 810 345

Please DO NOT use email to contact Fauna Rescue for wildlife that is injured, requires rescuing or re-locating.
For less urgent queries only please contact info@faunarescue.org.au

Snake Away Services 0413 511 335

To report animal cruelty contact the RSPCA 1300 477 722