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Shelter Hours

Tues - Fri, 9:30-5:30
Sat, 9:30-4:00
Adoptions stop 1/2 hour prior to closing.

On the 3rd Thursday of each month, we close 1/2 hour early for a staff meeting.

Identification and reclaim of stray pets is available Monday through Sunday, from 9:30am to 10pm.

Animal Services will be closed:

Nov 10
Nov 22-23
Dec 25
Jan 1

Washington’s First Mike and First Dog “Trooper"-- tagged and proud.


Animal Services is funded by city and county tax dollars, various service fees and donations.  License fees reduce the amount paid by non pet-owning taxpayers and help pay for the services we provide to the community.  Licenses are valid for one year from date of purchase.

All about Licenses

  1. Do I need a license?
  2. How much does a license cost?
  3. Where can I buy a license?
  4. What do my license fees pay for?
  5. My pet never leaves my property--why does she need a tag?
  6. What happens if my dog/cat loses her tag?
  7. My pet has a "chip."  Do I still need a license?
  8. What if I move?
  9. What if I don't buy a license?

Do I need a license?

Olympia, Lacey and Tumwater require licenses for all dogs and cats in city limits. Thurston County requires licenses for all dogs in the county and offers voluntary licensing for cats. Even if your pet "never goes out," he or she must have a license.

In the city limits of Olympia, pot belly pigs must also be licensed.

If you live in the city limits of Tenino, Yelm or Bucoda, you must buy your license at your city hall.  Each of these cities has its own license and a separate tracking system.

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How much does a license cost?

Fees:   Olympia, Lacey & Tumwater Thurston County
  Dogs, spayed/neutered $16.00 $12.00
  Dogs, not spayed/neutered $28.00 $24.00
  Cats, spayed/neutered $10.00 $  8.00
  Cats, not spayed/neutered $18.00 $16.00

Reduced fee licenses are available for low-income seniors with spayed/neutered pets and for service dogs.

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Where can I buy a license?

You can buy a license by printing and mailing the License Form, by phone with a credit card at (360) 352-2510, or in person at any of the following locations:

  • Animal Services, 3120 Martin Way, Olympia

  • Capital City Grooming & Pet, 113 Fir St NE, Olympia

  • Chambers Prairie Vet Hospital, 3100 Yelm Hwy SE, Olympia

  • Deschutes Animal Clinic, 7248 Capital Blvd SE, Tumwater

  • Farmhouse Family Pet Practice, 7602 Steilacoom Rd SE, Lacey

  • Hawks Prairie Veterinary Hospital, 8919 Martin Way E, Lacey

  • Healthy Pets Animal Hospital, 2022 4th Ave E, Olympia

  • Hedden's Pharmacy, 196 Sussex Ave W, Tenino

  • Kipert's Korner Feed, 8439 Old Hwy 99, Olympia

  • Lacey Animal Clinic, 4242 Pacific Ave SE, Lacey

  • Lacey City Hall, 420 College St SE, Lacey

  • Mt. View Vet Hospital, 4620 Whitman Lane SE, Lacey

  • Olympia City Hall, 601 4th Ave E, Olympia

  • Olympia Vet Hospital, 155 Division St NW, Olympia

  • Ralph's Thriftway, 1908 4th Ave NE, Olympia

  • Scattercreek Animal Clinic, 7430 183rd Ave SW, Rochester

  • Steamboat Animal Hospital, 6531 Sexton Dr NW, Olympia

  • Tanglewilde Animal Hospital, 7447 Martin Way, Lacey

  • Thurston County Courthouse, 2000 Lakeridge Dr SW, Olympia (For county residents only.)

  • West Olympia Animal Hospital, 1602 Harrison Ave NW, Olympia

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What do my license fees pay for?

The money from license fees helps support the services provided to the community by Animal Services, such as:

  • 24-hour emergency pick-up of and owner notification (if known) of any injured animal, with limited medical support as needed.

  • 24-hour pick-up of any stray confined dog. Strays can be dangerous; license fees help keep strays off the streets.

  • 24-hour identification and field return of any licensed dog if an adult owner is at home; we don't want your dog at the shelter. We don't have enough room as it is.

  • Removal of any dead animals from city roadways and dead pets in the county.

  • 24-hour, 7-day access to the Lost Pet Hotline to encourage reclaim of lost (unidentified) pets.

  • Inspection, monitoring, and complaint resolution in area pet stores.

  • Lost and Found matching for missing pets out in the community.

  • Adoption of lovable, unclaimed or unwanted pets.  The cost of the adoption services themselves (spay/neuter surgery, shots, worming, and microchip) are supported by adoption fees.

  • Shelter, care and medical attention for all species of small, domestic homeless animals.

  • Investigation of animal cruelty/neglect, with court or legal follow-up as appropriate.

  • Quarantine of animals that have bitten a person and application of the Potentially Dangerous or Dangerous Dog sections of the ordinances, as appropriate.

  • Humane euthanasia of unwanted, injured, terminally ill or elderly pets.

  • A volunteer program which further extends our ability to provide services at the lowest possible cost to the community.

  • Responsible-owner and humane education in the schools, scouting programs, 4-H organizations, community groups, and other forums, promoting concepts of responsible pet care.

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My pet never leaves my property--why does she need a tag?

Boy, have we heard this one. Interestingly, we hear it most as people pick up their lost pets at the shelter. "Toby never leaves our yard, but the kids left the gate open and he took off."  "The fireworks must have really scared Muffin, because she's been gone for a week--thank goodness she's here at the shelter."

Accidents happen as gates are left open, fences are blown down, or you could even be involved in a car accident while traveling with your pet. Thunder or wind storms, power outages and other unforeseen occurrences can result in your pet being off your property. Our shelter is full of pets that "never leave the backyard."

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What if my dog/cat loses her tag?

Replacement tags for current licenses are available for $3.00 at any location you can purchase a license.

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My pet has a "chip."  Do I still need a license?

Yes. The chip is a great backup to a collar and tag, but a visible tag is your assurance to the community that your pet has a home and makes it much easier to return your pet to you.

The Shelter keeps only current information on our licensing database.  If you stop licensing your pet, our computer records may not show your pet, including its chip information, making it more difficult to track the chip and contact you if your pet shows up at our shelter or a vet's office.

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What if I move?

Call us with your new information and we'll gladly update your record. There is no cost for this service and it will help assure that your pet will get home if he or she becomes lost.

If you move outside of the Thurston County area, you will need to contact your new animal control agency and license your pet(s) with them. We do not maintain records for pets living outside the Thurston County area.

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What if I don't buy a license?

If we still haven't convinced you that pet licenses are good for you, good for your pet and good for our community, then we'll resort to what the law says:

"It is unlawful for any person to own, keep, or have control of any dog in the county (or dog and cat in the city) unless the person has procured a license therefor."  The fine for not licensing your pet is $103 in Olympia and Tumwater, $101 in Lacey and $67 in unincorporated Thurston County.

If an Animal Control Officer has to contact you for any reason, or if you call regarding a complaint or needing service, and you have a dog or cat, you will be asked to show proof that your pet is licensed, as required.  Owners who fail to comply with local ordinances are subject to citation.

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We are a tax-deductible 170(c)(1) agency. Tax ID No. 910819427 
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Revised: 10/26/12