PARKERSBURG - Dog tags go on sale beginning Monday, with the grace period ending in September.
All dogs six months or older are required to have a license and are required to wear the tag. The tags must be purchased annually and the tags purchased now are valid until June 30, 2014. Failure to have a license is a misdemeanor and can result in a $100 fine per dog.
The tags are $3 for county residents, and $6 for Vienna and Williamstown residents.
"The license for Parkersburg city residents who are dog owners is also $3. The city removed its municipal fee earlier so the fee is no longer $6, it's just $3, but the dog tags are still required," said Wood County Assessor Rich Shaffer.
Dog tags are available for purchase in the assessor's office at the Judge Black Courthouse Annex, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, at the Parkersburg/Wood County Humane Society shelter, 530 29th St., Parkersburg.
"They can also order their tags to be mailed to them. There is a place on the assessment card they receive. They can fill that out and send it in with their check and we will mail the tag out to them," Shaffer said.
A license for a "vicious" dog is $10 regardless of where the dog owner resides. The specialized red octagon-shaped vicious dog tags are designed to warn anyone trying to approach the animal.
"That designation is really up to the owner to determine as far as a dog tag is concerned. Some insurance companies require it, I think they look more at the breed, which may not, in my opinion, be the best way to do it," Shaffer said.
Funds collected by the county for dog licenses helps pay for animal control services, which are contracted by the Wood County Commission through the humane society.
State code requires the county to provide animal control services for dogs, the county opts to contract those services out at this time.
In addition to being a requirement, the dog tags can be used to find a lost pet.
"They can be a real help to the owner if their pet is lost, the identifying information is available on the county website, it can be accessed by using the tag number," Shaffer said.