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License your pets please

You take your dog or cat to the veterinarian every year to get their immunizations. You feed them the best food you can. You keep them clean and pampered. Why isn’t your pet registered yet? You may want to avoid the hassle of the time and money it takes each year because you don’t think it’s important. But here are a few good reasons for you to license your dog and/or cat in 2020.

Shelter support

Most importantly, you license fees help support the Denison Animal Shelter. The fees help pay the wages of employees, help purchase food and other supplies for the pets who are held there, and help pay for any medical expenses associated with the dogs and cats who are temporarily housed there.  Your license fees help keep dogs and cats alive for their owners to find them. Someday, that might be you.                                                                                         

Access to Denison’s Dog Park

Do you want to let Spot run free at Denison’s new Dog Park when it opens? You will need a license. The Parks and Rec board requires that dogs need to be licensed by their city of residency, if that city offers licenses. (Other rules apply for cities and unincorporated areas who do not offer dog licenses.)

Got rabies (vaccine)?

Licensing pets in Denison allows the City to make sure that every dog is current on their rabies vaccine, which is required by the State of Iowa. Cats also need to be current on their rabies vaccine, per Denison’s Code of Ordinances. Rabies is a horrible disease that affects the brains of humans and mammals, and can be acquired from a bite. The last thing you want is for your dog or cat to get a little too rambunctious with someone, bite them, and give someone rabies.

Be on the right side of the law

All dogs and cats living within city limits are required to be licensed, according to Denison’s Code of Ordinances. If your furry friend is picked up by the police because he got away when you were playing outside, the fine will be larger without a license. Plus, you will still have to pay for a license before you break them out of doggie jail. Stay on the right side of the law by licensing your furry friends.

Returning runaways

Yes, dogs and cats – even when they live inside your home – sometimes break away from their owners randomly to go on an adventure. When you are property licensed with the tag on their collar, you stand a much greater chance of getting your furry friend back. Plus, if your dog or cat does make it to the Denison Animal Pound, you will have a lower fine.

Shelter safety

Again, if your lost pet ends up at our Animal Pound and is licensed, it has a much lesser chance of being adopted out to someone else’s home. And if it has a tag on its collar, you will be contacted faster about your lost friend.

Relatively Inexpensive

At $20 for males and females, and $10 for neutered or spayed pets, the cost is relatively inexpensive when you compare the cost of their food, other medical supplies, and toys. Some licenses cost much more, and the fines for not having your dog and/or cat licensed are more than the $20.

So what are you waiting for? Come to Denison City Hall at 111 North Main from 8 am to 4:30 pm to license your pet. All you need to bring is proof that the animal has been vaccinated for rabies. If you want to claim the $10 discount for having a sterile animal, please bring proof of that as well. Most rabies vaccine statements will list if your dog or cat as been spayed or neutered.

If you cannot make it to City Hall during business hours, you can mail a copy of your rabies vaccine to City Hall along with a check for the proper fees. Make sure your name, address, and phone number are included. Please enclose a self-addressed, stamped envelope for us to mail back your license.

For more information or if you have questions, call us at 712-263-3143, or send an email to

See you soon!


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