As the holidays draw near, we begin to think about end-of-the-year tasks that need to be completed.  One thing we overlook is licensing our pets. I lived in the country most of my life, so moving to Duluth was a culture shock where pets are concerned.  My dogs are now on a leash in the yard for safety concerns, theirs and that of people passing by.  Now, I have to license my dog, something I never had to do before.  There is a new licensing structure in the City of Duluth you should be aware of.

The City of Duluth Animal Services program is helping Duluth residents keep their pets safe and protected with a revised and updated licensing program. Pet owners are encouraged to learn more about the benefits of compliance, details about the revised rules and most importantly, to get their pets licensed through the Duluth City Clerk’s office if they have not already done so. The revised licensing regulations and new fee structure took effect on December 1.

Some highlights of the revised program are:

A new lifetime pet license is now available for pet owners who can show proof of up to date vaccinations, rabies shots and spayed or neutered pets. Annual licenses are still available.

A new fee structure has been developed for pet licenses with different levels of fees depending on whether animals have been vaccinated and spayed/neutered.

There are benefits for pet owners who are diligent and compliant with licensing requirements (vaccinations/sterilization) such as:

  • Having 24 hours to retrieve an impounded pet without incurring a fee,
  •  Animal Services will offer a one-time free ride home for licensed stray or lost pets,
  •  Licensed pets that get impounded at the Animal Shelter and stay beyond 24 hours can be reclaimed by paying a fee (reduced from previous years);

Pet owners who are not compliant with licensing requirements will be charged higher fees and could result in delays in getting their pets returned.

Fees collected from pet licenses will go back to support Animal Services operations.

The revised program ensures pet safety, encourages responsible pet ownership and increases public safety. The program also aims to unite lost or stray animals with their owners as quickly as possible. Animal Services goal is to provide quality customer service and responsiveness to animal well-being.

Duluth Animal Services encourages pet owners to license their pets and be diligent about vaccinations. Pet licenses can be purchased through the Duluth City Clerk’s office located in Duluth City Hall, room 330 (411West First Street).

Additional questions about the regulations can be directed to Carrie Lane with Animal Services at 218-390-8065.