Having a dog in Berlin

This guide explains what all dog owners in Berlin must know. The rules can be different in the rest of Germany.

Coming to Germany

Taking dogs or cats to Germany – The German Way

Moving to the EU with pets – PerPETual

Registration, taxes and permits

Dog register

You must register your dog in the Hunderegister. It costs 17.50€. This is how you register for the dog tax.

Register your dog – Berlin.de

Dog tax

After you register your dog, you will pay the dog tax (Hundesteuer) by automatic bank transfer. The dog tax is 120€ per year for one dog, and 180€ per year for each extra dog.

Identification chip

Your dog must have an identification chip.1 A veterinarian can chip your dog. It costs around 50€.2

English speaking vets in Berlin

Dog tag

Outside your home, your dog must wear a collar with its name and address.3

If you have a Hundeführerschein, your dog must also wear its green tag (grüne Plakette).18

Dangerous breeds

You must register dogs of dangerous breeds at the Ordnungsamt. Pitbulls, American Staffordshire Terriers and Bull Terriers are considered dangerous breeds.4

This costs 30€. If you move, you must also report the address change. If you leave Berlin, you must deregister your dog at the Ordnungsamt.

Register a dangerous breed – Berlin.de


Outside your home, your dog must be on a leash.20 It must be less than 2 metres long.21 There are dog parks (Hundeauslaufgebiet) where your dog can play without a leash.

To walk your dog without a leash, you need a dog handler certificate (Hundeführerschein). You can get it at certain dog schools. It costs 80€ to 100€.5 You must take a theory exam and a practical exam. In the practical exam, you must prove that your dog follows your commands.5 Your dog must be at least 15 months old.6

List of certified dog trainers in Berlin (2016, in German) – Berlin.de

When you pass the exam, you receive a certificate (Sachkundenachweis für Hundehalter). You can then apply for the Hundeführerschein at the local Bezirksamt. This costs 94€.7

Apply for the Hundeführerschein (in German) – Berlin.de

When you get the Hundeführerschein, you also get a green tag (grüne Plakette). Your dog must wear it on its collar.

The Ordnungsamt sometimes patrols parks in Berlin. They give fines to people who walk dogs without a leash, or without a Hundeführerschein.

TASSO register

You can add your dog to the TASSO register. It’s free. You will get a dog tag (TASSO-Plakette) with a number on it. This helps people return your dog if it gets lost.

The TASSO register is a private initiative. It is not connected with Berlin’s Hunderegister. They do not share information.8

Insurances for your dog

Dog liability insurance

You must get dog liability insurance (Hundehaftpflichtversicherung).

This insurance covers you if your dog…

  • Harms a person, or another dog
  • Gets another dog pregnant
  • Damages another person’s things
  • Damages the apartment you rent

It does not cover you if your dog…

  • Gets sick
  • Bites a member of your family
  • Damages your own property

Compare prices with Tarifcheck. If you don’t speak German, Feather and Getsafe are your only options.

Your coverage must be at least 1 million euros.19 If you travel with your dog, make sure your insurance also covers you in other countries. If your dog is a dangerous breed, make sure your insurance covers dangerous breeds.

Pet health insurance

Dog health insurance (Tierkrankenversicherung) is optional.

It covers the veterinarian bills when your dog gets sick. It rarely covers routine operations like vaccines or castration, but it covers expensive operations.9 This can be important when your dog gets old.

The cost depends on your dog’s age, race and sex. Basic coverage costs around 20€ per month. Full coverage costs around 60€ per month.

Compare prices with Tarifcheck. If you don’t speak German, Getsafe and Feather sell pet health insurance, and they speak English.

How to behave with a dog

At home

You must be nice to your neighbours. If your dog barks all the time, or if you leave dog poop in the community area, you could get kicked out of your apartment.16

Dog poop

You must collect your dog’s poop, and put it in a trash bin. When you walk your dog, you must carry poop bags with you. If the Ordnungsamt catches you without a bag, you can get a 35€ to 250€ fine.

Dogs on public transit

You can bring dogs on public transit. They might need a ticket too.

How to bring dogs on public transit

Dogs in restaurants and stores

Most businesses allow dogs inside.10 Grocery stores do not allow dogs inside.

Restaurants and bars only allow dogs if they have a closed kitchen.10 Always ask if you can bring your dog inside.

You can’t bring your dog to a playground for children,11 or on a public beach. There are special beaches (Hundestrände) that allow dogs.12

How to meet other dog owners

In Berlin, use the Dog owners in Berlin Facebook group.

Most neighbourhoods have unofficial WhatsApp groups for dog owners. Ask other dog owners at the park, or on Nebenan.

Dog sitters

Use these apps to find a dog sitter:

English-speaking vets

English-speaking vets in Berlin

Finding an apartment with a dog

It’s harder to find an apartment that allows dogs.13 It’s even harder with big dogs.15 Over 60% of landlords don’t want dogs.17 Landlords can’t ban all dogs, but they just give the apartment to someone else. Most of the time, you need the landlord’s permission to have a dog.14

How to find an apartment in Berlin

Sources and footnotes
  1. §12 HundeG, couchdogs.de 

  2. tagesspiegel.de 

  3. check24.de, §12 HundeG 

  4. berlin.de, hundefuehrerscheininfo.de 

  5. berlin.de (archived) 

  6. diehundeschulen.de 

  7. Berlin.de 

  8. Berlin.de 

  9. verbraucherzentrale.de 

  10. reddit.com/r/berlin 

  11. §15 HungeG 

  12. zooplus.de, ostsee24.de 

  13. mydog365.de, wohnglueck.de, Reddit (March 2021), Mietrecht.com 

  14. dogorama.app (2023), perpetual.care, perpetual.care, test.de (July 2021), mietrecht.de 

  15. dogorama.app (2023) 

  16. berlin.de (archived), berlin.de (archived) 

  17. immobilienscout24 

  18. §19 HundeG 

  19. §14 HundeG 

  20. §28 HundeG 

  21. §23 HundeG