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Annual Licensing Deadline for Existing Pet Owners: April 1  

A person who fails to license a dog or wolf-hybrid in the required manner may be fined up to $500.00.  [20 V.S.A. § 3550(a)]

Minimum Fee Schedule

All licensing requirements apply to dogs and wolf-hybrids (DWH) age 6 months or older
Per Vermont law, municipalities may levy an optional additional surcharge fee, not to exceed $10.00, to enforce its animal and rabies control program.  [20 V.S.A. § 3581(c)(2)]

Adoption Date
(on or before)
License Fee by April 1 Total Fee if Late License Fee after April 1* Total Fee if Late License Fee after October 1* Total Fee if Late
Neutered or spayed  $9.00  $11.00  $9.00  $11.00  $7.00  $8.00
NOT neutered
or spayed
 $13.00  $17.00  $13.00  $17.00  $9.00  $11.00

* DWH adopted between April 1 and October 1: Owner has 30 days to license from time of adoption.

Working Farm Dog Fee: Add $5.00

Minimum Fee Components:  All minimum fees (above in chart) include a required $1.00 State of Vermont Rabies Control Program fee and a required $4.00 State of Vermont Spay/Neuter Program fee; this $5 total per license goes to the State. The municipal clerk (if compensated, in part or in whole, by fees) retains $2.00 for their own use for each license or permit they issue. The town keeps the remaining balance once the State and clerk are paid their share per license.

Impoundment Financial Hardship Waiver: A municipality may waive the license fee for an impounded DWH upon showing current vaccinations and financial hardship. The State forfeits its portion of the fee.

Special Situations

Annual Breeding License (or Special License) and Pet Dealer Annual Permit Fees 

Pet dealers are not exempt from other licensing requirements. See definition of pet dealer below.

Dogs or Wolf-Hybrids
Additional Each
(over 10)
Total (flat) fee
On or before April 1  $30.00  $3.00 $25.00
After April 1  $45.00 $4.50 $37.50


Definitions and Requirements  

General Licensing Requirements  

  • Neutered or Spayed Verification: Certificate of Sterilization signed by a licensed veterinarian.
  • Vaccination Certificate (or certified copy) signed by a licensed veterinarian.
  • Owner Certification of vaccination. (This should be recorded by the municipal clerk.)

Breeding License

Breeders may request a breeding [or special] license. Animals must be held in a proper enclosure. A current rabies vaccination is also required for each dog or wolf-hybrid. Such licensed dogs or wolf-hybrids are exempt from other license fees and any town surcharge. However, each breeding license issued is subject to the $1.00 State fee for the State Rabies Control Program. Note: Breeders of cats and ferrets may also apply for a breeding license for their operations. 

Pet Dealer

A pet dealer is any person (excluding pet shops, animal shelters, or rescue organizations) who sells or exchanges, or offers to sell or exchange cats, dogs, or wolf-hybrids, or any combination thereof, from three or more litters in any 12-month period. The permit must be displayed prominently on the premises where the cats, dogs, or wolf-hybrids are kept. Dealers are not exempt from other required license(s).  

Clerk requirements regarding pet dealers:  

  1. Provide the pet dealer a copy of Part 3 of the Animal Welfare Regulations (with Animal Health Contact Information) - Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets.
  2. Provide the pet dealer information about sales tax obligations.
  3. Maintain a record of the types of animals kept by the permit holder.

Working Farm Dog License 

“Working farm dog” means a dog that is bred or trained to herd or protect livestock or poultry or to protect crops and that is used for those purposes and that is registered as a working farm dog. Municipalities may not prohibit or regulate a “working farm dog” barking and/or running at large, on the license holder’s property, in order to herd or protect livestock, poultry, or crops. 

Temporary Vermont Visitors 

A person may bring a licensed dog(s) into Vermont for a period not to exceed 90 days, provided the owner has a valid, current certificate of rabies vaccination. 

Municipal Clerk Reporting and Record Requirements 

  • Deposit license fees into the town treasury within 60 days of receipt.
  • Provide a sworn statement regarding amount of money received and paid over by them to the town treasury.
    • Maintain record of issued licenses, with the names of the owners/keepers, names and descriptions of the dogs or wolf-hybrids, and registration numbers.
  • A license is valid in any part of the state and may be transferred, provided the license is recorded by the municipal clerk where the dog or wolf-hybrid is currently being kept.

Rabies Vaccination Requirements 

  1. All dogs and wolf-hybrids over 3 months old must be vaccinated.
  2. All vaccinations, including the initial vaccination, must use a U.S. Department of Agriculture-approved three-year rabies vaccine product.
  3. All vaccinations must be conducted by a licensed veterinarian.
  4. Every animal must receive a booster 9-12 months after initial vaccination.
  5. Vaccinations must be given every 36 months.