Dog & Kennel Licenses

New or Renewal
Major Credit Cards Accepted!

Important Numbers:

Dog Warden
Harold Dates

Dusty's Dogs 946-DOGS
(reunite a found dog with its owner by license number)

Hamilton County Auditor
Dog License Division 946-4123
(Monday-Friday 7:30-4:00)

SPCA 541-6100

Ohio Dog Law

The State of Ohio requires that dog owners license their pets. The license renewal period this year is December 1 - January 31. During this time, last year's licenses can be renewed and new licenses can be purchased without penalty.

The Board of Commissioners in each Ohio county sets the dog license fees and hires the Dog Warden.

Licenses purchased after January 31 are subject to penalty (double the license fee to $38 in Hamilton County) unless the dog has been acquired within the past 30 days.

The Hamilton County Dog License Program
Do the right thing for your dog!

Some important questions and answers regarding the licensing of your dog:
    • How do I purchase a dog license?

    The regular dog licensing period is December 1, 2017 through January 31, 2018.

    The regular annual dog license fee continues to be $19. If you fail to renew by the January 31, 2018 deadline, you can still purchase a dog license but an additional penalty of $19 will be added to the cost. Starting this year, you may purchase a 3-Year Dog License good for the 2018, 2019 & 2020 Dog License season. If purchased during the licensing period the cost is $57. Late fees do apply. Also available for the first time this year are Permanent Dog Licenses. If purchased during the licensing period the cost is $190. Late fees do apply.



    You may purchase a 1-Year Dog or Kennel License, a 3-Year License or a Permanent License at the Hamilton County Auditor's Office, 138 East Court Street, Room 304, in downtown Cincinnati. Please call 513.946.4123 for an application or details.

    1-Year Dog and Kennel Licenses can also be purchased on-line. Click the link on this page to 2018 Dog and Kennel Licenses New or Renewal. There is a $2 convenience fee charged if you purchase on-line.

    1-Year Dog Licenses may be purchased at one of our convenient neighborhood vendors. There is a 75˘ agent fee if you purchase this way.

    • Why should I buy a license for my dog?

    Dogs must be licensed by law, even if they never leave your property.

    A dog license tag attached to your pet's collar is proof of ownership.

    Owners of unlicensed dogs can be cited to court and fined.

    • How does a license protect my dog?

    Dogs wearing a license tag have a better chance of returning home through Dusty's Dogs, the Auditor's 24-hour hotline for reuniting lost dogs with their owners. The hotline (946-DOGS) tracks dogs by license number and is available to citizens and dog wardens who find a stray dog wearing a license tag.

    Unlicensed dogs can be impounded by the dog warden

    • Can licensed dogs run loose?

    NO! The license does not allow your dog any privileges, but it helps him get back home if he gets lost.

    Ohio law also requires that dogs remain under reasonable control at all times. Leashes and fences keep dogs safe. Loose dogs can be hit by a car, injured in a dog fight, cause neighborhood damage or injure a person or other animals.

    Loose dogs can also be impounded by the dog warden or turned into the animal shelter by a concerned citizen. The cost of redeeming an impounded dog includes a fine and court costs.

    If the dog is not licensed, the court fees may be doubled and the license fee increases from $19 to $38.

    • Can I transfer the license if I sell or give my dog to a new owner?

    Yes; call the Auditor's Office at 513.946.4123 for information. License transfers and replacement tags cost $5.00.

    • What should I do if I move?

    If you move within Hamilton County, report your new address to the Auditor's Office at 513.946.4123. If you move outside the county, call that county's auditor for license information.

    • What should I do if my dog gets lost? If I find a lost dog?

    If your dog gets lost, call the Hamilton County Dog Warden at 513.541.6100.

    If you find a lost dog wearing a current Hamilton County License, call Dusty's Dogs, 513.946.DOGS(513.946.3647). Dusty's Dogs is the 24-hour hotline that provides the name, address and telephone number of the dog's owner so you can return the pet to his family.

    If you find a lost dog that is not wearing a current license tag, call the dog warden at 513.541.6100.

A message from Auditor Dusty Rhodes:

Dear Dog Owner,

It is up to you to keep your dog healthy, happy, and safe.

 Clip art of a dog's paw   Take your dog to a veterinarian. Protect your pet from deadly contagious diseases by simple inoculations and regular checkups. Consider spaying and neutering to prevent the tragedy of unwanted puppies and to protect your pet from health problems.

 Clip art of a dog's paw   Give your dog regular exercise. A daily brisk walk on a leash can prevent many behavioral problems like chewing, barking, and digging. Help your dog burn up calories and energy in a healthy way.

 Clip art of a dog's paw   Feed your dog a balanced diet of good food and fresh water. Your dog can't just go fix a snack. You are his chef and server.

 Clip art of a dog's paw   License your dog. Not only is it the law, but a Hamilton County license automatically makes your dog one of Dusty's Dogs. Dusty's Dogs, 946-DOGS, is a 24-hour hotline that helps found dogs get home.

Remember, call 946-DOGS if you find a lost dog.


Dusty Rhodes

Fun things we learned about dogs licensed in Hamilton County:

 Cute picture of three Golden Retreiver puppies carrying a stick