Pet owners rushed to the Front Street Animal Shelter to get their pets licensed a day before the city plans to take a stricter approach on enforcement aimed at getting more pet owners to register their pets.

Last year in June about 1,200 pet owners licensed their pets. Since the city’s announcement early this June that unlicensed pet could mean owners facing up to $500 in fines – More than 2,200 people have registered this June.

Manager of the shelter, Gina Knepp, says she would like to see Sacramento reach more than 30 percent of its pet owners register their pets.

"There are about 250,000 cats and dogs living in our homes in the City of Sacramento,” Knepp said. “But yet only 13 percent of those pet owners are actually licensing their pets."

Knepp says city’s $20 pet license will help insure public health and safety by helping the city keep track of which animals have vaccinations.

The shelter is also including vaccinations, micro chipping, and ID tags for those who license their pets this month...

About 20 percent of the 5,500 dogs and less than 1 percent of 5,500 cats that arrive at Front Street each year make it home to their owner.

Knepp said licensing and micro chipping your pet can significantly increase chances of your pet being returned home if it runs away.

Pet owners that have not yet licensed or updated the registration on their animals may be automatically sent a citation. However, the citation will be waived if the owner complies with the law within 30 days of receiving the notice.