How to get a pet license in Portland

Registering your dog or cat is required for residents and comes with many benefits.

A golden retriever named Nacho poses in front of Niagara Falls in Oregon's Coast Range.

Multnomah County returns approx. 2,000 lost pets to their owners each year.

Photo by @pdx_nacho

Most pet owners have a list of go-to tricks for their furry friends: sit down, roll over, chase the red dot, etc. But there’s one command that Portland animal lovers might not know about — the Multnomah County pet license mandate.

Head tilts. Yep, if you have a dog or cat that lives in Portland, it must be registered with the county. Before you piddle on the floor, know there are several benefits to getting a pet license.

  • First and foremost, if your pet ever runs away, whoever finds your animal can type in the license number to find your contact information online and reunite you quicker. Just make sure your pet is wearing its tag.
  • Pet license fees also help fund teams that investigate and address instances of cruelty, neglect, loose pets, aggressive dogs, and bite reports, making our neighborhoods safer for everyone.
  • Revenue from pet licenses supports the Multnomah County Animal Services Shelter (MCAS), which provides food, healthcare, shelter, training, and foster/adoption services to approx. 6,000 pets each year.

To make it a more paws-itive experience, we’ve outlined some tips for getting a pet license.

  • Make sure your animal is up to date on its rabies vaccine. Many veterinary offices are also approved MCAS license vendors.
  • Fees range from $7.50 to $107, and vary between cats and dogs. Discounts are available for pet owners 65 and older, for spayed/neutered animals, and if you purchase a longer-term license.
  • Owners of service animals can apply for a waiver by filling out a request form.

When you’re ready to renew an existing license that has expired, order a brand new license, or pay for a license you’ve already received, you can do so online or by mail.

Similar requirements exist for pet owners in Washington County and Clackamas County.