Dogs and Cats Online

SA Government
Online pet registration app
Design + development

Australia’s first state-wide Dog and Cat registration solution.  The one-stop shop for owners, councils, veterinarians, microchip implanters, RSPCA and Animal Welfare League.


The SA State Government passed legislation requiring all dogs and cats to be microchipped from July 1, 2018. Dogs (and cats in some councils) also need to be registered and recorded on a state-wide basis.

The Dog and Cat Management Board within the Department for Environment and Water, as well as local councils, needed a solution that would replace 69 individual council dog and cat registers with a single, central, secure online database accessible 24/7, including via mobile devices.

Project included:

  • aligning different registration fees and individual council regulations
  • allowing vets and microchippers to be able to record animals as they are microchipped
  • providing user-friendly access for pet owners to maintain accurate records
  • a central database of registered breeders
  • enabling owners to avoid puppy farms and recognise registered breeders

The online system is the final piece in South Australia’s dog and cat law reforms and coincides with the introduction of mandatory microchipping, breeder registration and mandatory desexing.

A true digital transformation for SA Government and its local councils

  • 69 councils converged into one centralised system
  • 270,000+ registered users
  • 300,000+ animals registered
  • 80% of registrations within a 2-month window
  • Cloud-based auto-scaling system for loads of over 15,000 logins per day
  • Data migrated from 10+ systems in a 2-day period
  • Reduction in the effort of over-the-counter duties
  • Facilitated the move from lifetime to annual registrations
  • Lost & found for community, council and interstate lookup

One of the reasons we chose SRA was they were really strong on data migration. The ability to transfer the information from 69 different council registers into one was a big project in itself. We’ve really enjoyed the relationship with SRA, and it quickly became a trusting and respectful one.

Andrew Lamb / Chair, Dog and Cat Management Board.

Technology to be proud of

  • Streamlined, digitised, auditable system
  • Single source of truth for microchip records
  • Breeder database = compliance & reduced risk of puppy-farms
  • Vet, police & shelter connectivity
  • GIS – location mapping interface
  • Real-time reporting and advanced analytics for states and councils
  • Centralised finance management (inc reconciliation)
  • Incident reporting (harassment & attacks)
  • Track control and prohibition orders across boundaries
  • Postage & tag distribution centralised to reduce cost
  • Grant ranger and council officer mobility connection from a mobile device

Tech specs

  • AWS cloud:
    • Load balanced EC2 web servers, hosting:
      • .NET web app
      • .NET web API
    • RDS Database
    • CloudFront with WAF
  • GIS
  • Payment gateway
  • Support and ITSM
  • Managed hosting services

DACO reduced paper use by 4.5 tonnes per year and plastic use by 600Kgs per year!

SA Department for Environment and Water

Dogs and Cats Online is born!

Using Microsoft technology, SRA developed a cloud-based database hosted with Amazon Web Services (AWS) capable of scaling to support a growing number of users.

Using an Agile methodology, which broke design into discrete project sprints, stakeholders met regularly to determine priorities for the next sprint. Alongside this development, we also migrated dog and cat records from every existing local council databases into Dogs and Cats Online (DACO).

South Australia now has a one-stop online service for all registration payments, microchipping and breeder information, which is accessible on desktop, laptop and mobile devices, and supports:

  • Up to 250,000 SA dog owners
  • DCMB staff
  • Staff in each of the 68 councils
  • Breeders and associations
  • Hundreds of veterinary staff and microchippers
  • Police and enforcement
  • Dog businesses (pet shops, working dogs etc)
  • Community and environment

In the past, councils have had to send out renewal notices, reminder notices and enforcement letters to non-payers, wasting time and resources chasing up dog (and cat) registrations. DACO does this for them while allowing them control of such things as letterhead, terminology, fees and more.

Helping SA Government help its community

DACO for pet owners

  • Access from any device
  • Faster, simpler online registration processes
  • Ability to record pet as lost
  • Provides an accurate microchip/tag registry for lost and found pets
  • Ability to transfer ownership to a new owner
  • Simpler change of address, even between council areas
  • Registering of pets even when not obliged by the council

DACO for councils

  • Ability for dogs to be identified and re-homed across council boundaries
  • Tracing ownership and breeding details for every dog in SA
  • Prevents puppy farms and other non-legitimate activities
  • Ability to monitor dog control orders across council boundaries
  • Supporting the objectives of breeders and groups such as greyhound racing
  • Better animal management and enforcement using search and mapping

DACO for breeders and breeder associations

  • Maintains the integrity of breeds
  • Publish contact details

DACO for vets and shelters

  • Improved ability to locate and reunite with owners faster
  • Reduced shelter demand
  • Re-homing and fostering options
  • Record new microchip/desexing information directly
  • Delegate user roles within the clinic (whilst protecting owner privacy)

DACO for police and enforcement

  • Allows proactive alerting to animals with orders in the area
  • Reduction in redundant penalty notices if an animal moves councils

DACO for community and environment

  • Reduced consumables (paper/plastic)
  • Greater data transparency

It's time to register your dogs and cats