By: Tracey Zysk – June, 2014
At this year’s town meeting, the residents of North Andover voted to amend the Town of North Andover General Bylaws by deleting Chapter 88-Dogs, and inserting Chapter 88-Animal Control.
Some will ask why and others may not have realized these bylaws needed to be updated. But one thing is for sure with over 3000 dogs in North Andover, it was time to review these laws.
What does this mean for the North Andover dog owner? Well it means that NA updated their chapter 88-Animal Control to mirror the state general bylaws. As with all bylaws the state bylaws supersede any town bylaw. Therefore, it only made sense for NA to become compliant with the state.
Massachusetts, a state known for its animal advocate ways and for animal legislation, has one of the strongest general bylaws protecting animals in the country.
As always, your dog must be licensed with the town, must be up to date on all vaccinations, and your dog must be on leash when off your property. As a pet owner it is your responsibility to “poop and scoop” after your dog and maintain and provide the proper health and wellness for your pooch.
But the biggest change in the North Andover Chapter 88-Animal Control bylaws is for those that have MORE than four dogs on their property at a time. This can refer to your personal pets, if you operate an in-home doggy daycare, and if you are a breeder.
Chapter 88-3.2: More than FOUR Dogs (please refer to the complete list of details within this bylaw), but to sum it up it reads as the following:
License and Vaccination Requirements: Anyone who owns or boards more than four dogs within the Town of North Andover must apply for and obtain a kennel license from the Town Clerk.
New Dogs and New Puppies: The kennel licensee who is the owner of the dogs must report each new dog in the kennel within 30 days to the Town Clerk.
Inspection Process: Before the Town Clerk can issue the kennel license, the Health Division Animal Inspector must inspect the proposed kennel.
Periodic Inspections: Before the kennel license is renewed at any time, the Animal control Officer and/or the Health Division many inspect any kennel.
Kennel Review Hearings: If there are any violations from the Animal Control Officer, the owner will be notified within 7 business days and a have a hearing within 14 businesses days.
Penalties: Any person maintaining a kennel after the kennel license has been denied, revoked, or suspended will be subject to the penalties of Section 88-7 of this bylaw.
License Due Date: Kennel license renewal forms will be mailed out by December 1 of each year. Kennel licensees must return forms and fees to the Town Clerk by January 15.
Fee: The fees for licensing each kennel shall be established by the Board of Selectman.
The purpose of Chapter 88-3.2: More than FOUR Dogs, is to protect our pets from hording situations, uncontrolled environments, illegal doggy daycares, illegal backyard breeding, and puppy mills.
Animal Abuse and neglect is a felony in all 50 states, and the abuser may be charged with up to 5 years in jail.
Tracey Zysk, owner of Wiggles & Jiggles Pet Care in North Andover MA is a local pet care professional. She has been featured on local radio, tv and newspapers educating the general public on animal care and animal health & wellness. Tracey is a proud supporter of Police, Fire & Military K9 units and National Award winner of the Platinum PAW award. Tracey may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Become a fan on Facebook at Wiggles & Jiggles Pet Care.