The Cuyahoga County Department of Consumer Affairs is warning residents to avoid online scams when ordering dog licenses online.
Scammers working from outside the U.S. have created a bogus “Ohio” dog licensing site that appears to be an attempt to collect fraudulent fees, credit card numbers and demographic information.
In Ohio, dog licenses are sold only through counties, not through the state.
The bogus site lures would-be victims with promises of deep discounts that don’t exist. The fraudulent site also wildly exaggerates late penalties, saying they can be up to $300. The actual late fee in Cuyahoga County is $20.
Under no circumstance does applying for or renewing a dog license in Cuyahoga County require residents to share their own date of birth or their pet’s health records.
“People rushing to meet the deadlines may stumble onto the scam site, give away personal information–and get stuck without the dog licenses they paid for,” said Sheryl Harris, Director of the Cuyahoga County Department of Consumer Affairs.
Cuyahoga County dog owners can purchase or renew dog licenses by:
- Returning, with payment, the license renewal forms mailed to them by the County
- Purchasing 2020 dog licenses at convenient neighborhood locations across the county. (A list is available at the county website above.)
Cuyahoga County residents can report this or any scam to the Department of Consumer Affairs online at consumeraffairs.cuyahogacounty.us or by calling the Cuyahoga County Scam Squad line at 216-443-SCAM (7226).