Amnesty period for pet license about to end – Tukwila pet owners could be fined

Residents in unincorporated King County and 27 contracting cities, including Tukwila, have a little more than a week left to take advantage of an amnesty period for unlicensed pets before they face a no-tolerance fine. As part of the new Regional Animal Services model for animal control in King County, residents were given a 90-day amnesty period to license their pets without facing a fine. The amnesty period expires at the end of the day Sept. 30 Starting Oct. 1, residents who have unlicensed cats or dogs face a fine of $125 for spayed or neutered pets, and up to $250 for an unaltered pet.

  • Tuesday, September 21, 2010 2:33pm
  • News

The amnesty period is running out to get your dog or cat licensed through King County. As of Oct. 1

Residents in unincorporated King County and 27 contracting cities, including Tukwila, have a little more than a week left to take advantage of an amnesty period for unlicensed pets before they face a no-tolerance fine. As part of the new Regional Animal Services model for animal control in King County, residents were given a 90-day amnesty period to license their pets without facing a fine. The amnesty period expires at the end of the day Sept. 30 Starting Oct. 1, residents who have unlicensed cats or dogs face a fine of $125 for spayed or neutered pets, and up to $250 for an unaltered pet.

Under the new model that took effect July 1, the cost for pet licenses for spayed or neutered animals remained unchanged at $30, and the price for unaltered pets was reduced to $60 (previously $90).

“The amnesty period is a great opportunity for residents to comply with the law, protect their pets with a license, and avoid a potential fine,” said Regional Animal Services Manager Ken Nakatsu. “After Oct. 1, we have to comply with the code adopted by King County and 27 contracting cities and issue a fine if you are caught without a pet license. Now is the time to prevent that risk and gain the benefits of a pet license.”

Residents can purchase pet licenses in person at more than 100 locations in King County, including many QFC grocery stores, and online. Visit www.kingcounty.gov/pets for a list of sales locations or to purchase or renew a license online. Pet licenses are renewed annually and are good for one year from the date of purchase.

Under the new Regional Animal Services model, discounts are available for disabled and senior residents, as well as for those with juvenile pets up to 6 months old. All dogs and cats over 8 weeks of age in unincorporated King County and contracting cities must be licensed.

Besides avoiding a fine, the perks to having a licensed pet in King County include:

* The first time your pet is found, King County will attempt to skip the shelter and deliver the pet to your home.

* Licensed pets have a longer stray hold at the shelter to give residents a chance to locate a lost pet before it is made available for adoption.

* The Vacation Pet Alert Program allows residents to provide contact information for a pet’s caretaker while they are away so that King County will have the correct contact information if something happens while the owner cannot be reached.

* Pet-license fees fund programs that help thousands of homeless animals in King County find new homes each year, and pay for services such as spay/neuter programs.

* Licensed missing pets reportedly are located faster by reporting them to Regional Animal Services. If a resident finds a stray pet wearing a pet license, they can call the phone number on the license to get contact information for the owner, even after business hours.

Residents in unincorporated King County and 27 contracting cities should act by Oct. 1 to license their previously unlicensed pets to avoid the potential fines:

Auburn, Beaux Arts, Bellevue, Black Diamond, Bothell, Carnation, Clyde Hill, Covington, Duvall, Enumclaw, Issaquah, Kent, Kenmore, Kirkland, Lake Forest Park, Maple Valley, Mercer Island, Newcastle, North Bend, Redmond, Sammamish, Sea Tac, Shoreline, Snoqualmie, Tukwila, Woodinville, Yarrow Point.

For more information, or to purchase or renew a pet license online, visit www.kingcounty.gov/pets.

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