TAVARES — In May 2013, Lake County Commissioners reviewed the county animal license fees, and approved changes to assist in offsetting costs associated with providing basic needs for animals housed in the shelter. The County also contracted with PetData, an online animal licensing service, to collect fees and manage the license and rabies vaccination data for Lake County pet owners.
The fee schedule changes, which became effective on Friday, Nov. 1, increase the one-year license fee for a sterilized animal from $5 to $8. Buying a three-year license will cost $20, which equates to a 20 percent discount compared to buying one each year. Senior citizens pay $5 for a one-year, and $10 for a three-year license for a sterilized pet. Pets not sterilized have a rate of $20 for a one-year license, and $50 for a three-year license.
“One of the main goals of our animal services’ staff is to educate and inform residents about the importance of sterilizing pets, and getting a pet license, which can only be issued if a pet is vaccinated for rabies,” said Cyndi Nason, Animal Services Division Manager. “Rabies vaccinations ensure that if a pet is exposed to another animal that might have rabies, it won’t have to have a lengthy quarantine, be euthanized or expose humans to this deadly disease.”
Rabies can be fatal to humans if not properly and promptly treated. Rabies vaccination of dogs, cats and ferrets is required by state law and county code.
Besides ensuring the health of the public, licensing also helps animal services’ staff return family pets, should an animal become lost.
Many pet owners purchase their county licenses through their veterinarian when getting their pet’s rabies vaccination. County staff has been working to inform local veterinary practices about the changes in fee schedule and registration procedures.
Residents who don’t wish to purchase animal licenses through their veterinarian can do so at the Lake County Animal Shelter located at 28123 County Road 561 in Tavares or online at www.PetData.com. Proof of a pet’s current rabies vaccination is required. Shelter hours are Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
For questions regarding animal licensing, rabies vaccinations or pet adoptions, contact the Animal Services Division at 352-343-9688 or visit www.lakecountyfl.gov/adopt.