At the April 5 meeting, the Ann Arbor City Council approved changes to the city’s dog licensing ordinance with the hopes of simplifying the process and compelling more residents to comply with the law. The ordinance now has dog licenses expiring at the end of the month in which the dog’s rabies vaccination expires, with one and three-year options.
Licensing fees have not changed at this time. One-year licenses for a spayed or neutered dog are still $6 and unaltered dogs are $12, while three-year licenses are $15 for spayed or neutered dogs and $30 for unaltered dogs. Service dogs are licensed for free.
In order to coincide with the effective dates of the rabies vaccinations, dogs having less than 24 months until their next rabies shot will be issued one-year licenses that are set to expire on the last day of the month in which the shot must be administered. For dogs that have 24 months until their next rabies vaccination, a three-year option is available that will also expire the last day of the month when their next rabies vaccine is due.
The city has issued approximately 3,300 dog licenses. With the changes to the ordinance and an increase in education efforts, the city aims to reach a licensing compliance rate of 40 percent in the coming years.
There are plenty of reasons to get a dog license. The primary one is, of course, it’s State Law in Michigan. But dog licenses also help control and prevent the spread of rabies. It can also help identify lost dogs and return them to their human companions. One of the biggest reasons to get a dog license, however, is to be able to get access to the three dog parks in Ann Arbor. In order to visit Swift Run, Olson Park, and Broadway Park, the city’s three off-leash dog parks, you’ll need to have your dog licenses.