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E-Government Goes to the Dogs with Online Pet Services

County government Web services extend to animal lovers with services like online pet licensing and lost pet registration.

by / August 15, 2011
Elaine Pittman

County governments provide a span of online services including options to receive emergency alerts and apply for permits, and in some counties, Web services are available for dog owners to register their pets and receive other useful information regarding their four-legged friends.

Clark County, Ohio, Auditor John Federer announced that starting Dec. 1, the county will begin accepting online payments for dog tag registration through the county auditor website.

“We received a number of e-mails and phone calls into our office sharing how excited [residents]  were [that the county is] bringing this technology to them and how much more efficient and easier it is for people who have dogs to get them licensed,” Federer said.

The county is still in the process of selecting a vendor to supply the electronic payment method and hopes to make its final decision by mid-September, according to the county.

Clark County dog tags range from $20 to $100 and once payments can be accepted online, an additional interchange fee will be added to the registration cost. According to the auditor’s online application form, currently dog owners can fill out the application online but must manually send payments to the auditor’s office.

King County, Wash., residents already have the option to pay for pet registrations and pet license renewals online. However, pet owners who choose to pay for the licenses online through the county’s website must pay a $1.49 service fee, according to the county’s website.

But for some counties, pet services extend beyond paying for dog registrations online.

The Morgan County, Ga., website outlines tips on emergency preparedness for pets during a disaster. A YouTube video on the site provides pet owners with tips to on how to prepare themselves and their pets for an emergency, and shows the proper pet materials owners should pack in the event of an evacuation.

The official website  for Manatee County, Fla., shows a list of stray or found dogs and cats to assist residents with finding a lost pet or to find a pet to potentially adopt. The list includes a photo of each animal and a brief description that provides information including its name, type and age. 

If a Manatee County resident’s pet goes missing, he or she can register the pet through on online form on the website and receive an e-mail notification when an animal matching the description arrives at the shelter or is registered as “found.”

Discussion Starter: What pet services does your agency provide? Share your comments below.

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Sarah Rich

In 2008, Sarah Rich graduated from California State University, Chico, where she majored in news-editorial journalism and minored in sociology. She wrote for for Government Technology magazine from 2010 through 2013.

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