Non-domestic cats

A domestic cat (Felis catus and Prionailurus bengalensis x Felis catus) is one that has an owner, is microchipped, kept and fed by humans. All other non-domestic cats, including those that are semi-dependent on humans, stray or feral are listed as an Invasive Biosecurity Matter under the Biosecurity Act 2014. Under this Act, a person must not distribute, dispose, move or feed these cats.


Non-domestic cats are found all over Australia. In Brisbane they can be found in a variety of locations, such as in our natural areas, industrial estates or suburban streets and parks.

Problems caused by non-domestic cats

Brisbane is the capital city with the highest diversity of native plants and wildlife in Australia.

Cats have a strong hunting instinct and prey on a wide range of native animals including small mammals, birds, reptiles, amphibians, insects and fish.

In urban areas, cats may also prey on small domestic pets and poultry.

Cats are known to carry parasites including toxoplasmosis and feline hook worm both of which may impact upon human health. Transmition of viruses such as the feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) to domestic cats is usually fatal. Cat colonies can increase the risk to public health and create amenity issues for residents and businesses. 

Prevention and control

Council manages non-domestic cats in accordance with the actions and objectives listed in the Biosecurity Plan for the Brisbane Local Government Area.

There are steps that can help to manage the negative impact of cats, as well as reduce your property’s attractiveness and accessibility to non-domestic cats.


Do not feed non-domestic cats, or release them into the environment. As well as directly impacting our natural environment, health and amenity, it is also a serious offence to feed or release a non-domestic cat under the provisions of the Biosecurity Act 2014. Contact Council on 07 3403 8888 if you witness feeding or release of non-domestic cats.


Council undertakes control programs to help protect Brisbane’s native wildlife. You can register your property as a management location using Council’s Feral animal sightings online form or contact Council on 07 3403 8888.

More information

Find out more about caring for your cat. Alternatively, you can find out more by phoning Council on 07 3403 8888.

Last updated:9 May 2019