Dog Licensing Overview 

Butler County licenses approximately 30,000 dogs per year.  Not only is the license required by law, it ensures your dog a free ride home. When the deputy dog wardens find a licensed dog running loose, they can look up the information and make sure your dog is returned to you safe and sound. 

State law changed effective Dec. 1, 2013 allowing for the purchase of 1-year, 3-year or permanent dog tags. In Butler County, 1-year tags remain $14,  3-year tags are $42, and permanent tags are $140. All these dog tag options are available for purchase in the Auditor's Office or through our online site. Only 1-year tags may be purchased through our agents. The annual renewal period is Dec. 1-Jan. 31.

If you have not licensed your dog yet, click purchase dog tags at left or visit the Butler County Auditor's Office in downtown Hamilton at 130 High St., third floor.

2023 Dog Tags Now on Sale

Listen to our radio message

Purchasing a Duplicate Tag
If your dog has lost its tag, duplicate tags are available for purchase from the Auditor's Office. Due to a change in state law, as of 5/22/2012 duplicate tags increased to $5 each.  You can photocopy your original receipt, so that we have your tag number.  Include $5 with that copy and send that along with a self addressed stamped envelope to the address above.  Or you can come in and get one in person, it will only take a few minutes.

If you have any further questions please feel free to contact us at (513) 785-6767. 

Transferring a Dog License
If you have given away or sold a dog that has a current license, you can transfer the license to the new owner. Due to a change in state law, as of 5/22/2012 the cost to transfer a dog license increased to $5. You will need to contact our office at (513) 785-6767 for the application.

Loss of a Beloved Pet
If you have lost a dog due to death, please inform us as soon as possible at (513) 785-6767. If we receive this information before November 1 we won't mail out a renewal notice reminder for that particular dog. If you get a new dog you will need to purchase a new tag for the new dog. 

Change of Address
If you move, please call and give us your correct information at (513) 785-6767.  Remember that the dog license is linked to your address. You want to be sure that the information is correct, should you be separated from your dog. 

Kennel License Information
The Auditor's Office requires a letter confirming that the location of the kennel meets local zoning regulations before a kennel license will be issued for the first time.

Townships and municipalities may have different requirements.

A kennel license includes 5 dog tags at a cost of $70.00 per year as long as the license is renewed by January 31 annually. After January 31 there is a $70.00 penalty for all renewals. Additional tags may be purchased for $1.00 each.

The kennel license application form is available here.

Dangerous Dog Registration 
Per state statute, the County Auditor is required to issue a dangerous dog registration certificate and a dangerous dog tag to a person who is the owner of a dangerous dog, who is 18 years of age or older, and who provides a fee of $50 and certain specified information. The owner of a dog who is issued a dangerous dog registration certificate is required to renew the dog’s registration certificate annually for the same fee and in the same manner as the initial certificate was obtained. 

For more details on the dangerous dog law please see the links below.

New Ohio Law Concerning Vicious Dogs, Effective May 22, 2012

Analysis of Sub. H.B. 14 (Vicious Dog Law)

Assistance Dog License 
According to the Ohio Revised Code (ORC) section 955.011:

“When an application is made for registration of an assistance dog and the owner can show proof by certificate or other means that the dog is an assistance dog, the owner of the dog shall be exempt from any fee for the registration.”

Before we will issue an “Assistance Dog License” we must see proof from a “nonprofit special agency” that the dog has been trained to be of assistance to you and this training meets the requirements of the law. We will make a copy of your certificate and call the facility that issued it to verify that the dog has actually been trained to benefit your circumstances.

To qualify, the dog must have been trained to assist a sight-impaired, hearing-impaired or mobility-impaired owner.

See below the definitions from the statute:

  • Assistance dog - means a guide dog, hearing dog, or service dog that has been trained by a nonprofit special agency.
  • Guide dog - means a dog that has been trained or is training to assist a blind person.
  • Hearing dog - means a dog that has been trained or is in training to assist a deaf or hearing impaired person.
  • Service dog - means a dog that has been trained or is in training to assist a mobility impaired person.

Additionally, the statute defines the qualifying disabilities further:

  • Mobility impaired person – any person, regardless of age, who is subject to a physiological defect or deficiency regardless of its cause, nature or extent that renders the person unable to move about without the aid of crutches, a wheelchair, or any other form of support, or that limits the persons functional ability to ambulate, climb, descend, sit, rise, or perform any related function.
    • Mobility Impaired person includes a person with a neurological or psychological disability that limits the person’s ability to ambulate, climb, descend, sit, rise, or perform any related function.
    • Mobility Impaired person also includes a person with a seizure disorder and a person who is diagnosed with autism.
  • Blind means either of the following:
    • Vision twenty/two hundred or less in the better eye with proper correction;
    • Field defect in the better eye with proper correction that contracts the peripheral field so that the diameter of the visual field subtends an angle no greater than 20 degrees.

Ohio's Assistance Dog Tag law

Other links:
Butler County Rural Zoning

Commercial Dog Breeders Act, Effective March 13, 2013

Sampling of Ohio Laws Dealing with Dogs

Dog Breed Information
Perhaps you don't yet have a dog or are in the market for a new dog. For your convenience, the below links will take you to web sites that may help you decide on the dog breed that would be right for you.

                 Butler County Auditor
                 130 High Street
                 Hamilton, OH  45011

                 Map Location


                 Board of Commissioners

Office Hours
8:00 AM - 4:30 PM, Mon. - Fri.

Conveyance Desk
closes daily at 3:30 PM

Phone: 513-887-3154