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How many dogs can you have?

How many dogs can a person own

The number of dog parks, grooming parlors, training schools, and pet food stores shows that dogs are a popular pet favorite. There’s no denying that all that furry love is a little too hard to resist, and while we love our dogs, sometimes keeping a pack of them doesn’t sit right. Like any other pet, dogs require a lot of love, care, and attention, not to mention the expense and time demands. In most states, the law limits the number of pets one can keep; this is done exclusively to ensure their well-being and your own. Animals, domesticated or otherwise, are federally covered by state laws to uphold and safeguard them and the community that lives around them- disregard and violation of these laws often translate into grave legal ramifications.

How many dogs can you legally own?

The question of how many dogs is permissible to keep within legal rights is not an uncommon one; people looking to adopt a furry companion, dog lovers seeking to add to their pack, and pet owners expecting a litter knows this dilemma all too well. Unfortunately, we can’t call a uniform number that works universally for dog ownership restrictions. More often than not, these laws vary based on jurisdiction. However, we can break down state reservations on the number of dogs you can keep in Canada, the U.S.A, Australia, and the U.K.


About 7.5 million households in Canada have pets; this equates to 57% pet ownership in the state. With 32% of the ownership statistics amounting to dog owners, there is no doubt that Canadians are smitten with dogs. Canada ensures responsible pet ownership by putting laws that limit the number of dogs each residence can have. The city of Toronto, for instance, covers dog ownership in the Municipal Code Chapter 349, clearly stating that no person can keep more than three dogs in and about any dwelling unit. On the other hand, Hamilton, Ottawa restricts the number of pet dogs to two per household. While the capped dog ownership number is flexible primarily with the proper permits, more and more cities across Canada, like Kingston and Hamilton, are looking to review the laws to accommodate a little over three dogs.


The Australian federal government covers ownership and dog pertaining laws in the Dog Act 1976. Like most states, the national laws on pets are not definitive as most regions variate them to suit their residents. New South Wales permits up to four dogs in one’s public place control; the ordinance does not explicitly stipulate a limit to how many fuzzy companions one can keep at home. In contrast, jurisdictions like Queensland, Tasmania, Victoria, and the Northern Territory are pretty particular, setting their ownership limit at two dogs per household. When dissecting Australian dog ownership laws on a broad scale, the permissible number for 90% of the regions is inexplicably two dogs per dwelling unit. With an approved permit, one can own up to 12 dogs in most parts of Australia.


Dog ownership codes in the United States are very diverse, thus making loose statements impossible. On a broader aspect, all states in America critically observe the federal Animal Welfare Act that caters to pet treatment- dogs included. The prevalent order on dog ownership in the states permits a maximum of three dogs per household for pet owners living in large cities and towns to avoid causing a nuisance. The number remains adjustable based on property space and residential area. Texas, for example, allows six dogs for individuals living on less than half an acre of property space and eight dogs on property exceeding half an acre. Comparatively, Great Falls, Montana, states a limit of two dogs over four months of age per home while stipulating a multiple animal permit for anyone looking to exceed that number.

The fundamental guideline for most states in the U.S.A, whether dog-friendly or not, is to ensure that you can comfortably house and sustain the number of dogs you’re accommodating and aren’t just hoarding the pets. Ultimately, the question of how many dog pets you can keep in the United States depends on your local administration.


Britain allows five pets per household; however, this number is incredibly variable. Dog breeders, in particular, require a Council License which is entirely dictated by space, time, economic scope, and the temperament of the dogs you’re looking to keep. For Londoners, the city permits up to three dogs per adult household. Comparatively, Dublin City Council residents are only allowed two dogs per household since they are less likely to be nuisances. Essentially, the legal dog limit in the United Kingdom is the local administration’s call. On a different note, your residence owner can also put a cap on the number of dogs you can keep around- some landlords have a strict ‘no dog policy’ that is applicable regardless of the stated local code.

Summing up on how many dogs you can have

Generalizing pet laws and guidelines is impossible as they differ from state to state. Ideally, suppose you’re looking to move into a new country, city, or county, you’ll primarily have to check in with the local ordinances for a precise insight on dog ownership regulations. Undoubtedly, some dog ownership laws are flexible, particularly for breeders, dog rescue organization members, researchers, and individuals with vast property space.

So, if you’re not ready to miss out on that fuzzy fury love, ensure you inquire with your local authorities for an assessment of your qualification. With the correct paperwork, space, time, and resources, a pack of dogs is often pretty doable.

If you’re a cat lover, check out our partner article about how many cats you can own!

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