Do I have to pay a dog tax?

Dog covered with a blanket | Dog tax in Germany

Question

We’ve just adopted a dog and now I’m wondering whether or not we’re exempted to pay dog tax?

Answers

  • If you adopt a dog from a German shelter you don’t have to pay for the first year, but if you adopted a dog from a German organisation that organises dogs from other countries to be adopted in Germany then you have to pay as they are not exempt. After some excruciating back and forth with the Finanzamt last year I found this out definitively. The organisation we got our dog through didn’t even understand it as they are in the west, and Berlin’s dog tax rules are different.
  • It’s supposed to be free for adopted dogs from animal welfare. To prevent freeloaders, the organisations have to be somewhat official though. So it might not work with a very small organisation, a foreign one etc.
  • There is a dog tax? This socialist country really knows how to rip its people off.
    • Yep, no matter how big the dog is or small, you pay every 3 months 30 € … 

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