Here are some helpful tips and information about some of Kitchener’s most common bylaws.

If you need to let us know about a problem, use the form linked below.

Report a problem

On this page:

  1. Noise
  2. Parking
  3. Snow and ice on sidewalks
  4. Backyard chickens
  5. Backyard fires
  6. Fireworks
  7. Pets

Noise

Our noise bylaw is in effect 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The bylaw limits excessive noise, including:

  • yelling
  • loud music, radio or TV
  • other unusual noise

City council may grant events exemption from our noise bylaws. Noise exemptions last until 11 p.m. Check the list of approved noise exemptions.

Construction noise

Construction noise is allowed 7 days a week, including holidays, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Noise complaints

To make a noise complaint, call the Waterloo Regional Police Services non-emergency line at 519-653-7700.

Noise exemptions

Apply for an exemption if you’re hosting a small private event like a barbecue, wedding or other party that might have excessive noise.

For large scale events, you must apply for a noise exemption through the director of enforcement.

Visit our noise complaints and exemptions page for more information.


Parking

Visit our parking bylaws page to find:

  • street parking bylaws
  • boulevard parking rules

Request an exemption to park in a legal parking spot overnight between December 1 and March 31.


Snow and ice on sidewalks

You are responsible for keeping the sidewalks around your home clear of snow and ice. After the snow stops falling, you have 24 hours to get the sidewalks down to clear pavement.

Pile snow on:

  • front lawns
  • boulevards

Do not pile snow on:

  • sidewalks
  • roads

If you have a neighbour who can’t shovel their sidewalks, consider helping them shovel to keep everyone safe.


Backyard chickens

You can apply to keep up to 4 chickens in backyard coops. There is a $50 registration fee, and city staff will check your backyard to make sure it complies with our coop regulations.

Apply to keep backyard chickens

Where to build your chicken coops

  • 2.5 metres from the side property line
  • if 2.5 metre space isn’t possible, you can build it closer to the property line with permission from your neighbours

Backyard fires

On private property, you can light a fire without a permit in a:

  • fire pit
  • outdoor fireplace
  • backyard chiminea

You can burn a fire between 6 and 11 p.m., 7 days a week. Please watch where your smoke travels to avoid disturbing your neighbours.

Keep your fire safe

If you want to have a backyard fire, you must follow these rules:

  • burn a maximum of 1 metre (3.2 feet) in any direction
  • be fully contained and controlled
  • have no flammable ground cover within 1 metre (3.2 feet) of the fire
  • only burn bush material, including tree limbs, branches and bush trimmings or logs made for fireplaces

A fire must be at least 5 metres (16.4 feet) from any:

  • property line or fence
  • building or structure
  • tree or hedge
  • road
  • overhead wire
  • another flammable item

From the time of setting the fire until the fire is totally out:

  • have a portable fire extinguisher or working garden hose available
  • an adult owner or occupant must watch and control the fire

Chapter 711 of our Municipal Code includes all the regulations for recreational fires.

Fire pits

A fire pit must have a clear, raised, fireproof barrier that surrounds the fire pit to keep it isolated.

Backyard fire complaints

To make a complaint about:


Fireworks

You can set off fireworks on these days:

  • Victoria Day
  • Canada Day
  • Diwali
  • the day immediately before and after these holidays

If you want to set off fireworks on any other days, you need to apply for a permit.

You cannot set off fireworks on public property. Please follow our fireworks safety tips below to prevent serious injury.

Fireworks safety tips

Do not set off fireworks

  • on any street or highway
  • in any woodlot, forest, public trail or ballpark
  • in any city park without a permit
  • within 25 feet of any building or structure
  • in areas with dead undergrowth or trees
  • firecrackers (including cherry bombs and torpedoes) cannot be sold or set off in Kitchener

When setting off fireworks

  • only use fireworks outdoors
  • choose a clear, open area
  • check wind direction and speed
  • always have an adult present
  • have water handy
  • use eye protection and wear non-flammable clothing
  • read and follow directions
  • keep spectators at least 20 metres from launch area
  • wait 30 minutes after the end of the display and dispose of fireworks properly by soaking in water and then disposing in trash bin

Never

  • use homemade fireworks
  • give fireworks to small children
  • light more than one firework at a time, or relight “duds”
  • throw or point fireworks at other people
  • carry fireworks in your pocket
  • shoot fireworks in metal or glass containers

Pets

Visit our pets and animals page to learn about:

  • dog licences
  • pet ownership
  • wildlife in Kitchener