Cat and dog ownership

Application forms for cat and dog registration may be found via Akureyri municipality's Service Portal (Þjónustugátt) :

An application form regarding cat registration. (in Icelandic)*
An application form regarding dog registration. (in Icelandic)*

*The following information must be included with the application application form regarding cat/dog registration:

  • The written consent of all persons in a multidwelling must have been obtained, where applicable.
  • The pet's latest deworming certificate
  • A vet's confirmation that the pet has been microchipped in accordance with the International Standards Organization committee's standards. (ISO 11784 or 11785).
  • A confirmations of the pet's Liability insurance

Note: to access the Service Portal you will need to log in either with the use of IceKey or your electronic certificate.

Fees

Fee list summary for cat and dog ownership in Akureyri municipality

Registration fee
The registration fee for cats is 2.500 kr.
The registration fee for dogs is 8.000 kr.

Supervision fee
The yearly supervision fee for cats is 2.500 kr.
The yearly supervision fee for dogs is 10.000 kr.

Exemption concerning search and rescue dogs and service dogs
The yearly supervision fee does not need to be paid for neither Search and rescue dogs nor Service dogs, but they do need to be registered.

Capture fee
Fees related to a cat or dog’s capture is paid at their retrieval and is 30.000 kr.
Additionally, a cost of 3.500 kr. is paid per day spent in captivity.
Unregistered cats/dogs may not be retrieved until after they’ve been registered.

Discount off supervision fee
Dog owners who have attended official dog training with their dog may get a 50% discount on the supervision fee, once per dog.

Liability insurance

A cat/dog owner is required to have liability insurance for their approved pet. The liability insurance should cover all possible damages the pet may cause people, animals, plant life and objects.

Ownership fees

To get approved for cat or dog ownership the applicant needs to pay the pet's registration fee and an annual supervision fee thereafter. The registration fee is a one-time payment, paid during the application process. The supervision fee is paid during the application process, and then again yearly. If the supervision fee has not been paid a month after its final due date, the ownership permission is revoked.

Search and rescue dogs and service dogs are exempt from annual supervision fees, but nonetheless need to be registered and must abide by other dog ownership rules.

Dog owners who have attended official dog training courses may get a 50% discount on the annual dog supervision fee one time per dog.

Regulations

Ordinance on cat and dog ownership

The health control committee of North Iceland, HNE, manages matters related to cats and dogs and their ownership in accordance with laws nr. 7/1998.

Akureyri municipality’s Division of Property Management and Environment acts on matters related to this ordinance on behalf of the health control committee, unless specifically noted.

Approval for cat or dog ownership

To register a cat or a dog, a cat/dog ownership application form must be filed to Akureyri’s Division of Property Management and Environment no less than a month after the pet was brought into a home. Keeping unregistered kittens/puppies at their mother’s address is permitted until they turn 4 months old.
After the licensee gets their application accepted, they will receive a copy of the accepted application.

To get a cat or dog ownership application approved, the following conditions must be met:

  • The applicant must have reached majority. The approval is individual, unassignable, and tied to the applicant’s home address.
  • The consent of all persons in a multidwelling must have been obtained, where applicable.
  • The owner needs to buy liability insurance.
  • The cat or dog needs to be microchipped.

During the application process the Division of Property Management and Environment may look to the police and other authorities for information on the applicant regarding matters which may concern the application process. If the applicant is found to have repeatedly or grievously violated previous cat/dog ownership application agreements or laws regarding animal protection, their application may be denied.

Cat / dog registration and declarations

Cats and dogs should be declared to the Division of Property Management and Environment at Akureyri municipality. Their name, age, sex, breed, colour, microchip number and other characteristics should be documented. The owner's name and address should also be documented.

A cat / dog owner has the responsibility to declare:

  • Changes to their pet's address
  • A pet's death
  • When a pet leaves the municipality
  • Ownership changes

Deworming, microchipping and tags

Cats and dogs must be dewormed each year.
The owner must hand in a veterinarian's deworming certificate to the Division of Property Management and Environment before December 31st yearly.

Cats and dogs who go through the ownership application process should be microchipped according to the International Standards Organization committee, ISO 11784 or 11785. Nr. 321 March 14th, 2011.

Cats and dogs should always wear a collar with an attached tag. The tag should feature the pet's registration number and the owner's phone number.

A dog's collar also needs to have a mark attached which shows that the dog's yearly ownership fee has been paid.

Cats and dogs in multidwellings, terraced houses etc.

Before a cat/dog is introduced into a multidwelling or terraced house, the other apartment owners' consent may need to be obtained.

If a multidwelling has a shared entrance, stairwell or other shared area, the other apartment owners' written consent needs to accompany the cat/dog ownership application. 
If the applicant's multidwelling apartment has a separate entry, even if there are other common areas, the other owners' consent is not necessary. In this circumstance the pet is strictly forbidden from ever entering the common areas. Any violation of this rule may result in the revocation of the owner's ownership privileges.

Consent obtained from other multidwelling apartment owners may be revoked. Reasons for a justifiable revocation include health reasons, allergies, discomfort, and disturbances, which go beyond what can be considered normal or typical levels.

If an apartment in a multidwelling, terraced house etc. is subleased the lessor should inform the renter whether cat and/or dog ownership is allowed in the house.

If an apartment owner in a multidwelling who has given their approval for a neighbor's cat or dog sells their apartment, the pet's approval is unaffected for the duration of its life.

An owner's obligations regarding precaution and supervision

Cat/dog owners and others in possession of them must make sure that their pet does not pose any risks, discomfort, uncleanliness or disturbances for other people.

Obligations regarding cats:

  • A cat owner is responsible for making sure their cat's collar has a bell on it.

Obligations regarding dogs:

  • The Division of Property Management and Environment may force a dog owner to attend a dog obedience training with their dogs, if they see a reason for doing so.
  • A dog owner is always responsible for picking up and disposing of their dog's fecal droppings.
  • Dogs must always be kept on a leash when outside their home address, unless they are working dogs working under their owner's or keeper's supervision. The person walking the dog must have full control over it. The dog may run free under supervision within an area enclosed by a dog-proof fence.
  • It's prohibited to tether a dog without designated supervision, to leave it outdoors unsupervised, on balconies or in fenced off terraces. When a dog is tethered to a lawn the leash must be short enough to allow for unhindered entrance to the building's front entrance. The leash must not be so long that the dog can leave the lawn.
  • If the dog's owner or supervisor has a suspicion of it being vicious or dangerous they must make sure that the dog is always muzzled when outside its home.
  • It's forbidden to attack train dogs.

In other respects, obey laws nr. 15/1994 on animal protection and regulations nr. 1077/2004 regarding animal conditions and care and work-related animal keeping, as applicable.

Cat and dog breeding

Where six or more cats/dogs are kept at the same address with the intent to breed them, it's considered breeding.

All tomcats need to be neutered once they reach 5 months of age, unless they are to be used for breeding.

Cat and dog breeding falls under regulations nr. 1077/2004 on accommodation and animal care and animal keeping for professional purposes.

Free roaming dogs and leash obligation

It's prohibited to take dogs to public events, such as May 1st, June 17th, Shopkeepers Weekend and Akureyri cultural night.

Areas where dogs may roam free:

  • Blómsturvellir in Hörgárbyggð
  • Within dog-proof fenced off areas, and inside designated dog training areas
  • In open areas, away from inhabited regions, free of sheep grazing.

Areas where dogs must be kept on a leash:

  • Footpaths
  • Open spaces
  • Kjarnaskógur
  • Public parks
  • Hlíðarholt's stable district
  • Breiðholt
  • Krossanesborg nature reserve
  • Eyjafjarðará delta (prohibited during bird nesting season)

*Letting dogs roam free in Hrísey is strictly prohibited.

Restrictions and prohibitions 

Prohibitions on cat and dog ownership and visits

  • Cat and dog ownership is forbidden in Grímsey and they may not go there on visits.
  • Cats and dogs are prohibited from free roaming in Hrísey.
  • Cat/dog ownership is allowed in other places within Akureyri’s municipality, e.g., in residencies, where they have been approved and where they comply with given requirements.
  • Cats and dogs who are not registered in Akureyri Municipality may not visit the town for longer than a 3-month period unless they get permission to do so by the Division of Property Management and Environment, and have gotten the appropriate approvals if staying in a multidwelling.
  • A cat or dog's short-time visit is governed by the respective house's or multidwelling's rules and/or the respective homeowner association's rules.

It’s not allowed to have more than 3 cats or 3 dogs 4 months or older in a home.

All tomcats need to be neutered once they reach 5 months of age, unless they are to be used for breeding.

Reprimands and revocation of cat or dog ownership privileges

If a cat/dog owner breaks laws regarding animal protection, animal keeping or regulations on animal keeping Akureyri municipality's Division of Property Management and Environment may revoke their ownership privileges or ban them from owning a cat or a dog in Akureyri municipality's administrative jurisdiction.

If the owner's violation is a misdemeanor, they should be reprimanded with the right to dispute it. Repeat offenders of animal protection laws and regulations on animal keeping have their pet ownership privileges revoked.

Cat and dog restricted areas

Cats and dogs are prohibited in buildings and lots cited in attachment document 3 in relation to regulation nr. 941/2002 regarding health. They are prohibited from entering food company establishments and water supply facilities. Those include:

  • Water supply facilities, water springs and their protected area, wellsprings and desalination pumps.
  • Public bathrooms and outdoors latrines
  • Any kind of trash storage and landfills
  • Lodgings, restaurants, and cafeterias
  • Camp sites and mobile home parks, except with their attendant's permission
  • Premises which are used to store, produce, or sell foodstuffs
  • Schools, educational institutions, kindergartens, playgrounds and children summer camps
  • Barbershops, hairdresser's, any kind of salon and tanning salons
  • Health institutions, hospitals, dental- and doctor offices, operation facilities, and treatment facilities
  • Fitness centers and gyms. Massage parlors and spas. Tattoo parlors
  • Prisons and other quarters for arrested individuals
  • Any kind of community hall or communal place where the public has access to a reception and services, such as churches, theaters, music halls, museums, cinemas, etc.
  • Cemeteries
  • Public transport (excluding taxis with the driver's consent)
  • Akureyri's community garden (applies to dogs only)

Pets are allowed inside facilities meant for their usage, such as sport facilities, health facilities, animal salons, etc.

Disabled people may bring their service dog with them onto busses, into accommodation establishments, schools, salons, hairdresser's, health facilities, sports facilities, spas, prisons, and community halls, if they unequivocally need their dog's assistance.

*In certain circumstances with special permissions dogs may enter health facilities and sport facilities containing an ice rink.
*In certain circumstances with special permissions cats may enter health-and treatment facilities.

Banned dog breeds

It is forbidden to own dogs of the following breeds:

  • Pit Bull Terrier / Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  • Fila Brasileiro
  • Toso Inu
  • Dogo Argentino
  • Any hybrid of the aforementioned breeds
  • Any wolf and dog hybrid
  • Other dangerous or undesirable breeds or breeds who dog experts, such as veterinarians or dog trainers recognized by the HNE, deem inadmissible.

Vicious, hazardous and dangerous dogs

If a dog's owner or Akureyri municipality's Division of Property Management and Environment have reason to believe that a dog is vicious or hazardous the dog's owner must make sure that the dog is always muzzled when outside its home.

If a dog is believed to be dangerous, the Division of Property Management and Environment, a person who has suffered damages by the dog, or the dog's keeper, may demand that the dog be euthanized. An authorized veterinarians or dog trainers must be consulted before a decision is made on whether the demand should be met or not.

Sanctions and bans on cat and dog ownership

Cat and dog owners or keepers who break cat/dog ownership regulations will receive a sanction statement in writing and given adequate time to reform their behaviour. If the owner or keeper neglects their duties or repeatedly goes against cat/dog ownership regulations or other rules or laws related to pet ownership Akureyri municipality may ban that person from owning a cat or a dog and may remove their pet from them.

Going against pet ownership regulations may result in fines, unless a more serious punishment related to other laws is required. Those infractions shall be handled appropriately in relation to the respective law.

Akureyri municipality's Division of Property Management and Environment may look to the police for assistance regarding the upkeep of cat and dog ownership laws and regulations. The local health committee may update pet ownership regulations as needed.

Run away dogs, unmarked cats, capture, storage, euthanasia, and cost

Regarding cats:

Cats without collars or other markings should be taken to a special cat storage and its capture should be advertised.

Regarding dogs:

If a dog runs away from their owner or keeper that person must immediately plan on how to capture it again.
Free roaming dogs should be taken to a designated dog storage and their capture should be advertised.

Regarding pets:

The owner of a captured pet must pay all costs related to the pet's capture and storage.

If an owner does not collect their pet a week after their capture and advertisement, the pet may be adopted to another person or sold for the price of its capture and storage. Otherwise, it may be euthanized, according to regulation nr. 321 March 14th, 2011.

For further information contact the Division of Property Management and Environment

Division of Property Management and Environment
Umhverfis- og mannvirkjasvið

Geislagata 9 (4th floor)
Open weekdays from 09:00-15:00
Phone number: +354 460 1000
E-mail: unsa@akureyri.is

Last updated 20. September 2021