Laws & Bylaws
Massachusetts General Laws and the Animal Control Bylaws of the Town of Dalton are strictly enforced to best protect residents and their pets. Violations of the following carry fines of up to $100 per offense. In addition, dogs may be ordered muzzled and/or impounded.
*All dogs must be licensed by six months of age. In addition, town bylaws require any dog that resides within the town for eleven (11) consecutive days in any calendar year to be licensed.
*Any owner or keeper of more than three (3) dogs must acquire a multiple pet permit.
*All dogs and cats six (6) months of age or older must be kept currently vaccinated against rabies and are required to wear a rabies tag attached to a harness or collar. Proof of current vaccination is necessary when licensing your dog.
*All dogs must be restrained at all times and not permitted to wander on private or public ways at will.
*No dog shall be allowed to defecate on public or private property other than that of its owner/keeper, or be allowed to cause a nuisance by barking, howling or otherwise disturb another person’s right to peace.
A downloadable copy of the Animal Control Bylaws is linked in at bottom of this page. The document is also available for review in the office of the Town Clerk during regular business hours.
License period & Fees
The licensing period in Dalton is January 1 to December 31. License fees should be paid prior to February 1 and are: $20.00 for spayed/neutered dogs and $25.00 without proof of spaying/neutering. Licensing may be done by mail by submitting the required information with the proper fee and a self-addressed stamped envelope. Download and use the linked form at bottom of this page, or simply provide the information listed below. Paperwork will be returned to owners with the license and tag.
*Owner – Name, Address, Phone
*Dog – Name, Breed, Color, Age
*Certificate of spay/neuter
*Rabies certificate for all dogs 6 months or older
A $10.00 late fee is added for licenses obtained after January 31, and an additional $50.00 Failure to License citation is issued by the ACO to all those owners of dogs unlicensed as of March 1. In addition, should our records show that the dog’s rabies vaccination has lapsed, owners could be cited an additional $50.00 fine for Failure to Provide Proof of Vaccination.