Press Release: Ottawa County’s Top Dog Names for 2016

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Ottawa County’s Top Dog Names for 2016

For Immediate Release
January 23, 2017
Media Contact: Bradley Slagh, Ottawa County Treasurer, 616-994-4501

Rin Tin Tin blazed a trail on television in the late 1950’s as a heroic figure in children’s programming and became a household name. Rin Tin Tin, however, was not a popular name among licensed dogs in Ottawa County. “Bella” and “Max” were the most common names on licenses purchased in 2016. The top names of 2016 were:

  1. Bella
  2. Max
  3. Lucy
  4. Charlie
  5. Sadie
  6. Buddy
  7. Molly
  8. Bailey
  9. Sophie
  10. Maggie & Daisy (tied)

In addition to compiling the list of top dog names, Slagh’s office also compiled a list of the more creative names licensed in 2016. “We have a number of dogs licensed in Ottawa County with names that are a bit more out of the ordinary,” said Brad Slagh, Ottawa County Treasurer. Some of those names were Tuna, Pavlov, Worf, Hawkeye, Miracle, and Astrid Fransworth.

Michigan Law requires that all dogs have a current county license with the tag displayed, yet the Ottawa County Treasurer’s office estimates that less than half of all dogs in the county are licensed.

“Licensing your dog is one of the most important things you can do as a pet owner. The health of our community and our pets is protected when all dogs are licensed,” said Slagh. “A license lets everyone know that your pet is not homeless or a stray, and it helps quickly reunite you and your pet should your dog become lost. A license also helps to protect the public from rabies, since licensed dogs must have a proof of vaccination.”

Not only is having a license for your dog the law, it can save time, money and emotional distress. In the event that a dog is lost, the license will make the return of the pet much smoother. When a stray is reported, an animal control officer will respond. Animals who are wearing their license tag will be returned quickly their owner. Very few taxpayer resources are used during this reunion. If the dog is unlicensed or does not wear its tag, the officer will bring the animal to the shelter. Not only are the owners of an unlicensed pet at risk for a citation, the shelter will require the owner to pay a redemption fee of $50-$190. Additional fees could be added to the redemption fee for boarding, vaccines and vet services. If an owner is not identified, the animal may be put up for adoption in just four days. A three-year dog license can cost as little as $25. Having dogs licensed and the tags displayed is best for the owner, the dog and the community.

Dogs must be licensed at four months of age. In Ottawa County, dog licenses can be purchased at any time but are issued to expire the month of the dogs’ rabies vaccination. New licenses are available for either one or three years and will expire in the month of the rabies vaccination.  

Dog licenses can be purchased quickly and easily from the online miOttawa Service Center, by mail, or in person at the Ottawa County Treasurer’s office, many township and city offices or at participating veterinarian offices. See the complete list and print mail-in forms. Online, you can also change the information associated with your dog’s tag or look up owner information if you find a lost dog wearing a license.

Prices for animal licenses:

  • Male/Female one year: $25
  • Spayed/Neutered one year: $10
  • Male/Female three years: $70
  • Spayed/Neutered three years: $25
  • Puppy 4-7 months of age: $10
  • Service Dogs: no charge

For questions, visit the Ottawa County Treasurer’s website at or call (616) 994-4501. The fees collected from dog licensing support the Harbor Humane Society, who serves as the County’s animal shelter, and Ottawa County Animal Control Officers.