FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Who needs an animal license?
All dogs/cats over four months of age residing in the city limits of Oxnard need an animal license. Even dogs/cats that are indoor-only or confined to fenced yards are required to have a current animal license.
Why do I need to license my pet?
It is the law to license your pet! Also, since Ventura County is rabies declared area, the license enforcement program helps to ensure public safety through rabies control by requiring proof of a valid rabies vaccination before a license is issued.
When do I license my pet?
Dogs and cats shall be licensed at the age of 4 months or within 30 days of acquiring your pet. Do not wait until your animal is spayed or neutered to obtain a license. We have a program to assist you in spaying or neutering your pet. For more information, please click on the Spaying and Neutering topic on the right hand side of the screen.
How much is the license fee?
The license fee is $100 for an unaltered (fertile) dog/cat and $20 for an altered (sterile) dog/cat. A penalty of 100% will be assessed if not licensed at the age of four (4) months or within 30 days of acquiring your pet.
What do I need to license my pet?
Complete the Animal License Application Form, Formulario de solicitud de licencia para animales, submit a valid rabies certificate issued by a veterinarian or authorized rabies clinic, and pay the appropriate fee(s) to license your pet. If the pet has been altered, you would need to submit proof of sterilization.
Where can I purchase a license?
You can mail your application and payment to or submit in person at:
Channel Islands Veterinary Hospital
741 West Channel Islands Blvd, Port Hueneme, CA 93041
Phone: (805) 984-9868
Marina Animal Hospital
3611 West Fifth Street, Suite #H, Oxnard, CA 93030
Phone: (805) 985-6700
Oxnard Veterinary Hospital
651 South Ventura Road, Oxnard, CA 93030
Phone: (805) 984-1850
How long is the rabies vaccination good for?
Initial rabies vaccination is good for one (1) year. The next series of rabies vaccinations thereafter should be good for three (3) years. Please contact your veterinarian for further information.
Click here for a list of veterinarians, clinics and hospitals in Ventura County.
What if I don’t have a rabies certificate yet?
If you don’t have a rabies certificate yet, you can purchase an interim. (An interim is a receipt of payment only and good for 30 days. It is not a license! ) This will give you time to get a rabies vaccination for your pet and submit the certificate to Animal Safety (Licensing) before the due date. Once you submit the current rabies vaccination, you will be issued a license tag for your pet. If you do not submit the rabies certificate by the due date, the license fee paid to the city will be forfeited and you will be required to pay for the license fee again including a penalty (100% of the license fee), and you are in violation of Oxnard City Code Section 5-29 which could result in the issuance of a citation.
How long is the license good for?
Your animal license is good for one (1) year as long as the rabies certificate is valid for the duration of that license.
What if I don’t pay a license?
You will be in violation of the Oxnard City Code and guilty of a misdemeanor, which could result in the issuance of a citation. Any dog or cat found without a current license tag or for which there is no current license may be taken up and impounded by the pound master or any peace officer.
I didn’t know I needed a license; I should not have to pay a penalty.
Ignorance of the law does not excuse you for not complying or finding out the requirements for having a pet in the City of Oxnard. The city ordinance code states that a penalty is due if the license is not acquired within 30 days after the pet turns four months old or within 30 days after acquiring the pet.
What is the penalty if my pet is not licensed?
The penalty for animal license is 100% of the license fee as adopted by city council resolution.
I didn’t know I needed a license; I should not have to pay a penalty.
Ignorance of the law does not excuse you for not complying or finding out the requirements for having a pet in the City of Oxnard. The Oxnard City Code states that a penalty is due if the license is not acquired within 30 days after the pet turns four months old or within 30 days after acquiring the pet.
Do I need to bring my pet with me to get a license?
No. You do not need to bring in your pet to get a license, only present an acceptable rabies vaccination certificate, and furnish the information required when you apply for a license. You may even apply for an animal license by mail. Please call Animal Safety (Licensing) at (805) 385-7818 for instructions.
What do I get after paying the fee?
A license tag will be issued after providing valid rabies certificate and paying the fee.
Does my pet need to wear the tag?
Yes. The license tag is your pet’s identification. This will ensure you can be reunited with them if found. Any dog or cat found without a current license tag may be taken and impounded by the pound master or any peace officer.
SEC. 5-51. DOG EXEMPTION FROM WEARING LICENSE TAG.
The license tag need not be worn when the dog is:
(A) Securely confined in a cage or vehicle;
(B) Confined in a veterinary facility, licensed kennel, grooming facility, or State chartered benevolent organization for the care of animals; or
(C) Participating in or training for sporting events, field trials, obedience classes, dog shows or herding livestock.
SEC. 5-52. CAT EXEMPTION FROM WEARING LICENSE TAG.
The license tag need not be worn when the cat is:
(A) Identified by a microchip implanted under the skin which is acceptable to and readable by the poundmaster;
(B) Securely confined in a cage or vehicle;
(C) Confined in a veterinary facility, licensed kennel, cattery, grooming facility or State chartered benevolent organization for the care of animals; or
(D) Being shown or exhibited in any cat or pet show.
Do I get a renewal notice before it expires?
A renewal notice will be mailed to you the month before the expiration date. However, it is only a courtesy notice and it is your responsibility to renew the license whether you receive a notice or not. You have 30 days after the due date to renew the license without penalties.
Can I pay for multiple years at a time?
No. The license period for any license shall not exceed more than 1 year as allowed provided the rabies certificate is valid for the duration of the license.
My pet’s tag is lost, what do I do?
If your pet’s tag is lost, a duplicate tag may be purchased for five dollars ($5.00) from Animal Safety (Licensing).
My pet’s license is still valid but I am transferring ownership, what do I do?The new owner may have the current license transferred to his/her name upon payment of a transfer fee of five dollars ($5.00).
Do I need to license my dog if it is a guide dog or service dog?
Yes. A license tag shall be issued free of charge to a dog used as a guide dog for a blind person when an affidavit attesting to the dog’s use as a guide dog has been submitted when applying for an animal license.
If you have a disability and use a service dog to assist you, you will need to apply for an animal license and pay the fee. In addition, Animal Safety Unit will issue an identification card to the service dog provided that proof has been submitted to Animal Safety (Licensing) that the pet has been trained and is used to assist you due to your disability.
How many dogs/cats can I have?
The Oxnard City Code allows a person in a residential zone to maintain no more than four (4) dogs and four (4) cats over the age of four (4) months.
Where does the fee I pay go?
Your license fee goes to the animal licensing program to be used for animal safety services and public safety.
For more information regarding animal licensing
Please contact Animal Safety (Licensing) at (805) 385-7818.
City of Oxnard – Animal Safety
214 South C Street, Oxnard, CA 93030