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Dog Warden Service

    The Council's Dog Warden Service aims to help prevent stray dogs from being a danger in traffic or a nuisance to people.

    Microchipping your dog

    To prevent your dog from straying

    • Keep your dog under close control at all times.
    • Check your property to make sure your dog cannot escape.
    • Ensure your dog can be identified with your name and address and telephone number on a collar and tag or have the dog chipped.  Ensure the information is up to date.
    • From April 2016 all dogs are required to be microchipped with the details of ownership kept up to date.

    Contact details

    In office hours - 01785 619402

    Straying Dogs

    Stafford Borough Council has a duty to control stray and unaccompanied dogs.

    The term stray refers to any dog which is not accompanied by an owner or other person with responsibility for that dog in a public place.

    This applies regardless of whether the dog carries identification or wears a collar.

    The first time a dog is caught straying, the dog warden will try to trace the owners and return it.

    Where it is not possible to find the owner or in cases of persistent roaming the dog will be taken to the Kennels used by the council where it will be kept safely for up to eight days.

    Any complaints about a stray dog will be responded to as quickly as possible; the collection service will generally be asked to deal with the complaint within one hour of the complaint being received.

    The Dog Warden will act in the strictest confidentiality and keep you informed about what they are doing.

    Contact details

    Normal office hours - 01785 619402 ( Monday - Thursday - 8.30am - 5pm and Friday 8.30am - 4.30 pm  

    Frequently Asked Questions

    I've found a stray dog and taken it home - what should I do now?

    I've seen a stray dog - what should I do?

    If the dog is wearing a collar and tag giving details of the owner's name and address, if possible, you should return the dog otherwise you can contact Environmental and Health Services on 01785 619402 (during normal office hours) or by email at to arrange collection by the dog warden. The more details you can provide when reporting will help us to successfully return the dog to its owner.

    The dog warden will arrange to collect the stray dog at a time that is convenient to you. When reporting out of normal office hours the dog warden will contact you early the next working day to arrange a convenient time for collection.

    Where possible we ask you to keep the dog secure until it can be collected.

    Stray dogs can only be collected from an identifiable premises or place, help us by tethering the dog or securing in a garden.

    Alternatively you may take a stray dog directly to the reception kennels if you decide not to wait for the dog warden to collect the dog.

    Our reception kennels are situated at Swanpit Kennels, Swanpit Farm, Gnosall, ST20 0EE opening hours 8.30am - 8.00pm Monday to Friday and 9.00am -12.00noon on Saturday and Sunday.

    If you wish to keep a stray dog you are legally required to notify Environmental and Health Services. You will be asked to sign a form agreeing to keep the dog for a minimum of one month, unless claimed by the original owner.  If, within this time you decide are you no longer able to keep the dog it must be handed over to the dog warden. You must not give the dog to family or friends because in the case of a dog being retained by the finder, the dog legally remains 'found property' and the original owner can reclaim it at any time. Therefore, the dog never truly becomes the property of the finder. 

    I have lost my dog - what should I do?

    You should contact Environmental Health on 01785 619402 or by email at as soon as possible to report that your dog is missing. You will need to give as many details as possible such as:

    • Where and when the dog was last seen?
    • What colour, size and breed is it? 
    • Is it tagged or micro chipped?
    • Your name address and contact details

    Dogs have been known to stray a considerable distance from home so we advise that you make enquiries at neighbouring councils.

    If your dog has been seized by the Council's dog warden it will have been taken immediately to:-

    Swanpit Boarding Kennels
    Newport Road
    ST20 0EE

    Tel: 01785 822221

    Reclaiming your dog

    Dogs may only be reclaimed from the kennels during the following hours 8.30am - 8.00pm Monday-Friday 9.00am - 12.00noon Saturday and Sunday, during weekends and evenings please ring the kennels first to arrange collection.

    To reclaim your dog a statutory fee of £45 is payable to Stafford Borough Council plus any kennelling and vet’s fees incurred in looking after your dog, payable directly to the kennels.

    Payment by cash or cheque.  Only payable directly to the kennels on collection.

    What happens if I do not collect my dog within 8 days?

    Seized dogs are taken to the kennels immediately and are kept for 8 days, after which time the former owner no longer has any ownership rights to the dog and attempts will be made to re-home stray dogs wherever possible, otherwise it may be put down.

    My dog got out of the house by accident - it wasn't straying!

    Any dog found wandering unaccompanied in a public place is classed as a stray and will be dealt with by the dog warden, if reported as a stray.

    Dangerous or banned dogs

    The Police are responsible for taking action where dogs are dangerously out of control and for the keeping of illegal breeds of dog.

    A dog is dangerously out of control if “a dog injures a person or behaves in a way that makes a person worried that it might injure them”.

    Report directly to Staffordshire Police (dangerous and banned dogs) telephone 101.

    What is a Dog Control Order?

    Notice is hereby given that Stafford Borough Council has made a Dog Control Order under Section 55 of the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005. The order came into force on 11 February 2008.

    The effect of the Order is to make it an offence for a person, who is in charge of a dog when it fouls on relevant land, to fail to remove the faeces from the land forthwith, unless that person has a reasonable excuse for failing to do so, or if the owner, occupier or other person having control of the land, has consented to that person failing to do so.

    The Order does not apply to a person registered as blind under section 29 of the National Assistance Act 1948, or in respect of a dog provided by a prescribed charity and upon which a person relies for assistance due to a disability which affects his mobility, manual dexterity, physical co-ordination or ability to lift, carry or otherwise move everyday objects.

    This Order will apply to all land, within the Borough of Stafford, which is open to the air and to which the public are entitled or permitted to have access (with or without payment).

    Copies of the Order are available for inspection at the Council Offices, Civic Centre, Riverside, Stafford. Alternatively you can download it online (pdf 12kb).

    Dogs Exclusion Order

    Dogs are excluded from all children's equipped play areas, whether enclosed or unenclosed, bowling greens, tennis courts, skate parks, paddling pools, wet/water play areas, multi-use games and the athletics enclosure at Rowley Park.

    Dogs on Lead Order

    All dogs must be kept on a lead at the following sites:-

    • Victoria Park
    • Stonefield Park 
    • Rowley Park 
    • Cemeteries, including church yards, run by the Council

    Dogs on Leads by Direction

    You must put your dog on a lead when asked to by an authorised officer of the Council on any site not covered by the above Dogs on Leads order.  This order is designed to target dogs that are not under control.

    What can I do about Dog Fouling?

    Problems with dog fouling should be reported to Environmental and Health Services on 01785 619402 or email us at Further information can be found on the Dog Fouling web page.


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