A surprising number of people don't know this, but in the state of Pennsylvania all dogs over the age of three months have to be licensed by law. This is done through your local county. Right now, the Pennsylvania dog wardens are enforcing this by going door to door performing a statewide check of dog licenses and rabies vaccinations. There is a $300 pet violation fine if your dog is not currently licensed or if their vaccination is not up to date. Below is a detailed explanation on how, what and where you can get a license.
There are two licenses available: yearly and lifetime. A yearly license is only good for one year and must be renewed annually. The current cost of a yearly license ranges from $4.45- $8.45 depending on whether your dog is spayed/neutered and if you are disabled or a senior citizen. Getting a lifetime license is a process you only have to go through one time and the license is good for the life of your dog. This license is available only if your dog is microchipped or tatooed (tatooing is rarely done anymore). The current cost of lifetime licenses range from $21.45- $51.45 again, depending on if your dog is spayed/neutered and if you are disabled or a senior citizen.
How to get a yearly license:
• By mail- you can print a Yearly dog license application from your county's website or pick one up here at Eagle Animal Hospital. Fill the application out and mail into your county treasurer's office with the appropriate information and payment.
• At your local county treasurer's office- You can walk in and have the application processed immediately.
• Online- Visit your county's website or go to www.padoglicense.com
• At an outside Agent's location- These are local businesses that are approved to issue yearly dog licenses. For a list of these locations visit your county's website.
How to get a lifetime license:
• The paperwork you need for a lifetime license includes a Lifetime Dog License Application and a Permanent Identification Verification Form which must be filled by a veterinarian or approved kennel.
• If your dog is not microchipped you can set up an appointment to do so here at Eagle Animal Hospital. Once microchipped, we will give you all the information and paperwork you need to fill out and mail into your county.
• If your dog is already microchipped you can come into Eagle Animal Hospital or another location that is a licensed implanter to have your dog's microchip scanned. We will scan the chip and give you the appropriate paperwork.
• Once your have your pet has been microchipped and/or scanned, you have thirty days to mail the paperwork, a self addressed and stamped envelope and payment into your county. They will then send you a license and tag for your dog.
To contact your local county:
Chester County Treasurer
P.O. Box 2748
West Chester, PA 19380-0991
Chester County Dog Warden
Montgomery County Treasurer
Attn: Garrett D. Page
P.O. Box 311
Norristown, PA 19404-0311
Delaware County Treasurer
County of Delaware Government Center Bldg.
Attn: License Department
201 W. Front Street
Media, PA 19063
To contact the state directly:
Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture
Beureau of Dog Law
2301 N. Cameron St. Bldg. 102
Harrisburg, PA 17110
If your dog already has a license and you are moving to a different county, it is simple to transfer the license to your new county. Mail a letter into your issuing county that includes your dog's license number, your information, the new county and $1.00 payable to both counties. Duplicate license tags are also available through your county for $1.45. Also, If you have found a lost dog that is tagged, you can reunite them with their owner by going to www.palostdogs.com.
If you have any further questions, would like to get your pet microchipped and/or scanned or to pick up paperwork and information about dog licenses, contact us at Eagle Animal Hospital (610) 458-8789 or www.eagleanimalvet.com. We serve Chester Springs, Downingtown, Exton, Glenmoore and the surrounding area.
Written by Kaelin Mast, receptionist