Animal Control



VACCINATION OF DOGS AND CATS AGAINST RABIES

The owner or keeper of a dog or cat six months of age or older kept, housed, brought into or sheltered in the City, must have the animal vaccinated against rabies by a licensed veterinarian using a licensed vaccine approved by the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. The owner or keeper must have the dog vaccinated within 30 days after the animal is acquired or arrives in the City or upon reaching the age of six months, whichever last occurs. The owner or keeper must get a veterinarian's certification demonstrating that it was vaccinated as required and stating the date of the vaccination and the duration of immunity.

The vaccination must be updated either yearly before the expiration date of the vaccination given previously, or if given before the expiration date, the owner can then have a 3 year vaccination given.  Please check with your vet for further details.

DOG LICENSES

The license period for a City Dog is April 1 to March 31 (with a 30 day grace period before a late charge is implemented) in any year. Any person residing in the City of Fitchburg who becomes the owner or keeper of a dog six months old or over shall, within 30 days of becoming the owner or keeper, obtain a license for the dog from the City Clerk. The City Clerk shall issue dog licenses and license tags in a form prescribed and furnished by the City.  When applying for a license, Rabies must be up to date and the “Certificate of Rabies” must be presented to the City Clerk.

4 or more dogs REQUIRES a Kennel License and Kennel Inspection and an appointment must be arranged thru Animal Control.


LEASH LAW

No owner or keeper of any dog shall permit such dog, whether licensed or unlicensed, to run at large or to be a public nuisance within the City. A dog shall not, solely by reason of participation in sporting events such as hunting, field trials or in training programs, be deemed to be running at large during such period of time as the dog is actually engaged in the event or sport if it is under appropriate restraint. Dogs may be taken outside the premises where they are kept and to and from those premises, but only if the dogs are on leashes or otherwise appropriately restrained. No person shall take, bring, or allow any dog into any public place, into any place to which the public has access, including but not limited to: any street, way or sidewalk; in any common area, park or playground; into any place where people congregate unless the dog is under the restraint of a leash or chain appropriate to the size and weight of the dog and so fitted that it does not cause the dog pain and provides maximum comfort to the dog while effectively restraining the dog.


POOPER SCOOPER LAW

No owner or keeper, or person otherwise in control of or responsible for a dog or other animal, shall permit or allow such a dog or other animal to leave feces within the City in any public area or private place, including but not limited to any park, playground, beach, public common, place to which the public has access, municipal recreation area, street, sidewalk, or the private property of someone other than the owner or keeper.

An owner or keeper, or person otherwise in control of or responsible for a dog or other animal, has a duty to remove and dispose of any feces left by the dog anywhere in the City, including but not limited to any park, playground, beach, public common, municipal recreation area, street, sidewalk, public area, area to which the public has access or private property. This duty includes a duty to clean up and maintain the premises in or on which the animal lives, whether permanently or temporarily.


BARKING DOG 

No owner or keeper, or person otherwise in control of or responsible for a dog, shall allow or permit the dog to annoy another person or to interfere with another person's right to peace and quiet by reason of loud or continuous animal noises from the property, building or premises where the dog is kept, or from a vehicle or conveyance in which the dog is traveling. An owner or keeper has a duty to prevent barking and other animal noises from disturbing other persons. Such noises, plainly audible at the lot line of the premises from which they emanate, and occurring continuously or repeatedly for 10 minutes or more, constitutes prima facie evidence of a violation of this subsection.
arrangements have been otherwise arranged. Lost / Stray dogs cannot be kept, and Animal Control will make arrangements to connect the lost animal with its owners.