Attention dog owners – It’s that time of year again!

You know what we’re talking about… your dog’s license renewal.

Michigan state law requires that any dog over 6 months of age be licensed and wear a collar with its license tag at all times (except while engaged in hunting activities).

If your pet is not licensed, you are breaking the law!

Reasons to Renew Your Dog’s License

Besides wanting to be a law-abiding citizen (obviously), there are several other compelling reasons to license your pet:

  • Licensed pets are much more likely to be returned to their owners in the event you are separated.
  • Having your dog licensed can help you to legally establish ownership of your pet should there ever be a dispute.
  • Dog licensing guarantees that your pet, family, and neighborhood are protected against rabies. Rabies is a fatal disease for both people and pets and only vaccinated pets can be licensed.
  • Dog licensing fees go to fund your local animal control. Should your pet ever become lost, these funds will help provide him or her with food, shelter, and medical care if necessary. You never know when these services might be needed.
  • By licensing your pet as dictated by law, you may avoid fines down the road.

How to License Your Dog

Okay, so you are convinced. How do you go about getting your dog’s license?

It is really pretty easy. Here are the guidelines for Waterford:

  • Dog licenses must be renewed each year. They are valid January 1 through December 31.
  • To avoid late fees, licenses must be purchased before June 1.
  • Your pet must be current on its rabies vaccination in order to purchase a license.
  • Bring proof of vaccination and payment to the Waterford Township Treasurer’s Office, Oakland County Animal Control, or the Oakland County Treasurer’s Office. You may also mail your information and a check to animal control, if desired.
  • License fees are $7.50 for each spayed or neutered pet and $15 for intact pets (as if you needed another reason to spay or neuter), with slightly discounted rates for senior citizens. After June 1 rates increase to $30 per dog.

Some exceptions to the June 1 deadline include being a new resident or obtaining a new dog. For more details visit the City of Waterford’s webpage.

Licensing your dog is part of being a responsible pet owner. Besides that, there are numerous benefits to be gained when you comply. If you haven’t renewed yet this year, don’t wait. Every day your pet goes unlicensed is another day where he or she could become lost.

If you have any questions be sure to call Oakland County Animal Control at (248) 391-4100.