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Dog Licensing Reminder (and Boston’s Most Popular Dog Names!)

The Boston Parks and Recreation Department’s Animal Care and Control Division reminds city dog owners that the annual deadline for licensing their pets is March 31. All dogs in Boston require a new license each year. 


Barney reminds Boston’s dog owners that March 31 is the deadline for licensing your pet.

“We take this time each year to remind pet owners not only that licensing your pet is the law, but a license is your pet’s ID and provides their best chance to be returned home if they become lost,” noted Animal Care and Control Director Alexis Trzcinski. “If your dog ever gets out, the chances of being reunited are greatly increased with a license.”

In preparation for the 2023 licensing deadline, the Animal Care and Control Division released licensing data from the previous year to reveal the most popular dog names of 2022.

The most popular male dog name in 2022 was once again Charlie with 81 registered in Boston, while Bentley brought up the back of the pack with 23 males with that name. The top female name registered was also the same this year, Luna, with 114 registered while 25th place went to Piper with 27 licensed.

The data also provides the 25 most popular dog breeds registered in Boston. In 2022 the top ten breeds were Labrador Retriever with 1,694 registered, Golden Retriever (727), Chihuahua (480), German Shepherd (392), Miniature Poodle (331), Pit Bull (321), Yorkshire Terrier (314), Shih Tzu (312), Beagle (311), and Australian Shepherd (296). 

All dog owners need to license their dogs by Friday, March 31, 2023. Dogs must be licensed if they are older than six months. Owners must provide a copy of their dog’s current rabies certificate. For spayed and neutered pets, owners must submit proof of spaying or neutering if they have not done so previously. 

Licensing fees are $15 for a neutered male or spayed female or $30 for an intact male or female. The dog licensing fee is waived for service animals and residents age 70 and older. Owners must also pay any outstanding Animal Care and Control fines. The fine for an unlicensed dog is $50. Please call (617) 635-5348 or email with any questions about the licensing process or to update your information in the database. 

For an in-depth guide on dog licensing, including a link to license your dog online, visit Animal Care and Control’s how-to article.

The City of Boston will also host a series of dog licensing and pet vaccine clinics from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays from March 4 to June 3 at seven BCYF community centers. For details, fees, and locations please visit or call (617) 635-1800. 

Animal Care & Control posts photos of adoptable pets on their social media accounts at, and



Based on City of Boston 2022 Licensing Data

  1. LUNA
  2. BELLA
  3. DAISY
  4. LUCY
  5. LOLA
  6. PENNY
  7. ROSIE
  10. SADIE
  11. MOLLY
  12. RUBY
  13. CHLOE
  14. COCO
  15. MAGGIE
  16. LILY
  17. MILLIE
  18. SOPHIE
  19. OLIVE
  20. WINNIE
  21. PEPPER
  22. LULU
  23. WILLOW
  24. ELLIE
  25. PIPER


Based on City of Boston 2022 Licensing Data

  3. TEDDY
  4. MAX
  5. FINN
  7. MILO
  9. ROCKY
  10. OLLIE
  11. LOUIE
  12. TOBY
  13. GUS
  14. HENRY
  15. BUDDY
  16. TUCKER
  17. ARCHIE
  18. LEO
  19. JACK
  20. BEAR
  21. BRUNO
  22. ZIGGY
  24. DUKE
  25. BENTLEY 


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