Pets in Beijing

Find out about the responsibilities of being a dog or cat owner in Beijing, including registration and vaccinations...

Dogs are not required to be leashed in Beijing, but it is recommended as traffic tends to be heavy and stray animals may be a danger.

The animal breeding industry in China is not regulated. Pets can be adopted through an animal shelter or purchased through a pet store (which are supplied by unregulated pet-market sellers). There are not many shelters in Beijing, but they do exist.

Dog Registration

All dogs in Beijing must be registered. Registration can be completed at the nearest Public Security Bureau. Required documents may vary from location to location. Applicants should bring the following in order to register:

  • two passport size photos of the dog (frontal headshot)
  • the owner's passport
  • a passport size photo of the applicant
  • the owner's residence permit
  • foreign household registration
  • housing lease and permission letter from the owner's housing complex management

The dog may also need to be brought to the Public Security Bureau for the application. Enquire with the bureau to determine whether this is necessary.

A registration fee is payable. A (reduced) renewal fee is payable each year thereafter. A substantial discount is available on the initial registration fee if the owner can provide a certificate proving that the dog was spayed or neutered in China by a registered veterinary clinic. Pet owners are advised to proceed with caution when finding a qualified veterinarian for neutering and spaying as there are some unscrupulous and unqualified establishments offering the service. Legally licensed animal hospitals will display their license number (issued by the Agricultural Bureau) on a bronze plaque either inside or outside their premises.

Size Restrictions

There are size restrictions for dogs living within the fifth ring road. This includes the districts of:

  • Chaoyang
  • Chongwen
  • Dongcheng
  • Fengtai
  • Haidian
  • Shijingshan
  • Xicheng
  • Xuanwu

Within this area dogs over 35cm in height (shoulder height) are prohibited. Some housing complexes and apartment buildings outside of these areas also prohibit dogs over 35cm in height so owners are advised to confirm with their complex. Households within this catchment area may only have one dog.

  • For further information from the Municipality of Beijing on dog registration and restrictions: Click here

The International Center for Veterinary Services website has comprehensive information on registering dogs in Beijing.

  • For information from the ICVS on dog registration: Click here

Animal Shelters in Beijing

The Beijing Human and Animal Environmental Education Center is a shelter that rescues and re-homes dogs and cats. The non-profit organisation also works to promote animal protection and educate the public about respecting animals and caring for them.

Beijing Cat rescues, sterilises and re-homes stray cats in Beijing.