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Westmoreland dog wardens to canvass county in April for unlicensed, unvaccinated dogs

| Monday, April 1, 2013, 12:01 a.m.

Dog wardens will canvass Westmoreland County during April looking for unlicensed and unvaccinated dogs.

In 2012, about 45,000 dogs were licensed by the county Treasurer's Office, Deputy Treasurer Sean Kertes said.

“They're doing an ... enforcement throughout the commonwealth,” he said.

Up to 10 wardens will be scouring municipalities five days a week beginning Monday, according to the Treasurer's Office. Dogs 3 months and older are required by law to be licensed by Jan. 1 of each year and vaccinated against rabies.

Kertes said the Treasurer's Office has provided the state with a list of delinquent dog owners who could receive warnings or fines as high as $300 per dog.

Wardens are taking a “more public approach” to ensure that dog owners follow the law, said Samantha Krepps, press secretary for the Department of Agriculture.

“A dog license is the best way to protect your dog if (it) gets lost,” Krepps said. “It's inexpensive to license your dog and abide by the law.”

The canvassing is done every year, said Tom Wharry, a dog law supervisor with the Agriculture Department.

Dog licenses can be purchased from county treasurers. Annual fees range from $6.45 for spayed and neutered dogs to $8.45 for unaltered dogs.

Lifetime licenses cost $31.45 for spayed and neutered dogs and $51.45 for unaltered dogs.

Senior citizens and people with disabilities are eligible for reduced fees.

Application forms are available on the Westmoreland County Treasurer's Department website or at the courthouse. For more information, call 724-830-3180.

Renatta Signorini is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 724-837-5374 or rsignorini@tribweb.com.

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