Kaabong District became functional on 1 July 2005. Prior to that, it was known as Dodoth County in Kotido District. The district is part of the Karamoja sub-region, home to an estimated 1.2 million Karimojong. Kaabong has two counties: Dodoth East County and Dodoth West County. This is divided into one town council, Kaabong, and thirteen sub-counties: Karenga, Lobalangit, Kawalakol, Kapedo, Lolelia, Lodiko, Kathile, Sidok, Kalapata, Kamion, Kaabong East, Kaabong West and Loyoro
In 1991, the national population census estimated the population of the district at about 91,200. The national census in 2002 estimated the population of the district at approximately 202,800. The annual population growth rate in the district, between 2002 and 2012, was calculated at 7%. In 2012, it is estimated that the population of Kaabong District was about 395,200.