Do You Need a License for Your Dog in New York City?If you don't have a license for your dog in New York City, you're breaking the law. As of January, 2011, New York City law requires that all dogs be licensed, and that all license tags be attached to the dog's collar while in public. Dog owners may be fined for violation of the law.
Dog licenses apply to all dogs kept by New York City residents, including those titled “guard” or service dogs, though guard dogs may be subject to an additional fee and requests for training documentations.
Benefits of Licensing Your DogYour dog can only benefit from being licensed, as the license affords them safety not available to unlicensed dogs. Most importantly, New York City now has an online e-location system for finding lost licensed dogs. If found, a lost pet’s tag number can be put into the system, alerting the owner that the animal has been found.
In addition, licensed dogs are allowed to run off-leash at dog park runs, giving them an open air opportunity perhaps not found in a city backyard. A dog license can also be helpful if you need to obtain medical records for your pet, or for finding the history of a previously owned pet you’d like to adopt.
Dogs with access to these benefits have been shown to live longer, healthier lives.
Licensing not only helps the dog owner in case of emergency but also contributes to the protection of the public health.
How to Get Your Dog License in New York CityTo get a license for your dog, you must fill out and mail an application with your license fee. The license fee is $8.50 for spayed/neutered dogs with documentation and $34 for unspayed/unneutered dogs and a certificate of spaying can be obtained from your veterinarian.
An application for a license can be downloaded through the NYC.gov website. Print out the form, complete the information and mail it to: NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene
Veterinary Public Health Services
P.O. Box 4768, Church Street Station
New York, NY 10261-4768
You can now also complete the license application process online. Dog licenses in New York City are subject to yearly renewal. Renewal forms will be automatically sent to the address first used every year, or can be obtained by calling 311.
More Resources for New York City Dog OwnersThe NYC Dog eLocator System -- If you find a lost dog, you can use this online service to track down the owner if the dog is wearing a license.
File a Lost Pet Report -- If you lose your pet, you can file a report and/or search a found pets database.
Low-Cost Spay/Neuter Clinics for NYC Pets -- Spay or neuter your pet to reduce overpopulation.