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Town Resources

Animal Control Services

Sergeant Mitch Kuc and A.C.O. Kyle Dragon of the Hadley Police Department are the Town’s Animal Control Officers. The Hadley Police Department can be reached at (413) 584-0883.

A.C.O.’s  responds to a variety of calls, most commonly those pertaining to the care and control of dogs.

Town of Hadley residents and visitors to the town are required by state law and town by-laws to care for, control and clean-up after, any domesticated animal for which they are responsible for. Caring for an animal includes, but is not limited to, providing each animal with food, shelter and water. Controlling an animal includes but is not limited to, keeping each animal within the confines of a resident’s property and if outside those boundaries, keeping each animal restrained on a leash. Clean-up is defined as to “….remove and dispose of any feces left by his or her dog on any sidewalk, street, or other public area”. Citizens are also required to remove and dispose of feces left on the private property of another.

Please click the link for the complete by-law.

A.C.O.’s also responds to incidents such as loose livestock and sick or injured animals. The Town of Hadley does not have facilities to care for cats.

Dog Licenses

Each resident of the Town of Hadley is also required to license any dog three months or older by April 1st of each year. Failure to do so will result in a $20.00 fine and may result in the matter being referred to the District Court as failing to license a dog is a criminal offense.

Residents applying for a kennel license must have an inspection completed by an Animal Control Officer prior to any license being issued. There is no charge for such inspection.

Fines and Fees

The Town of Hadley by-laws allow for the following schedule of fees for the pick-up and storage of dogs running-at-large;

1st Offense- $15.00
2nd Offense- $25.00
3rd Offense- $50.00

There is also a $3.00 per day fee associated with the daily care of each dog. Please note that the Town of Hadley may also utilize a local kennel during winter months or in the event there is no space at the Hadley Pound. All fees are due prior to pick-up. Fines may also be applied in addition to the fees for repeat offenses.

Fines for the violation of town by-laws are $100.00 for the first offense and $300 for second or subsequent offenses.

Unattended Dogs in Vehicles

The Hadley Police Department is contacted almost daily during the spring, summer and fall months reporting dogs being left in hot cars. There is no specific temperature that it is “safe” to leave an animal in a vehicle, as the inside temperature of a vehicle can be affected by the amount of sunlight alone. It is highly suggested that dog owners leave their dogs at home on days where your car’s air conditioning is needed to keep you comfortable. In the event a responding officer(s) deems is necessary to remove an animal from a vehicle due to the heat, the owner will likely be charged a pick-up fee, daily kenneling fee as well as a fine for violation of town-by law. In extreme temperature conditions, criminal charges may be sought. Dogs that are in distress as a result of heat will be rescued and brought to the closest veterinarian’s office for treatment. Criminal charges will likely be filed in these situations.

Animal Complaints

In order for action to be taken on any vicious or nuisance dog, a signed complaint must be sent in writing to the Animal Control Officer. Such complaint should include the name and address of the dog owner, the specific actions to support that the dog is vicious or a nuisance, and the dates and times such behavior was observed. No action may be taken by the A.C.O. unless such complaint is in writing. In the event of a dog bite, the animal control officer shall be notified immediately.

Written complaints may be sent to

Frequently Asked Questions…

When are the Animal Control Officer’s hours?
A.C.O.’s work on an as needed/on-call basis.  Sergeant Kuc works in a police capacity full-time and will respond to animal related calls while on-duty as well.

What should I do if I am concerned about the well being of an animal?
Call the police department with the nature of the concern. An A.C.O. will be contacted and respond if necessary.

Can a dog be left chained-up outside?
Yes, as long as there is shelter and water for the dog. The dog must be able to shelter from the elements. Access to only a doorway is not sufficient. Dogs may not be left chained and unattended for more than 5 hours, and they cannot be left outside between the hours of 10pm and 6am or during weather advisories or warnings.

Does my dog have to wear a collar?
Yes. It is required by law that your dog’s license be affixed to a collar. It is also highly suggested that an additional tag be attached with the dog’s and owner’s name as well as a phone number where someone can be reached at all times. This may allow for a dog to be returned home immediately and for waived pick-up fees.

What can be done about a dog that barks constantly?
If the owner takes no action to prevent it, the owner can be fined up to $300.00 for violation of the Noise By-Law.

My neighbor’s dog is always loose, what can I do about it?
Submit a complaint in writing to the Animal Control Officer. Dog owners will not be notified of the identity of the complainant.

What do I do about a sick wild animal in my yard?
Contact the Police Department and it will be addressed immediately.

Does an Animal Control Officer deal with everything relative to animals?
No. The Animal Inspector, who is appointed by the Board of Health, maintains livestock records and arranges for rabies testing on animals suspected of carrying rabies.

Where is the closest animal shelter?
Dakin Animal Shelter in Springfield, Ma.

My animal is sick/injured and my vet is closed, what do I do?
If your vet is closed and provides no emergency contact information, the closest 24/7 emergency hospital is in South Deerfield and can be reached at (413) 665-4911.

Can donations be made?
Yes. The Animal Control Department accepts dog care supplies and they can be dropped off at the Police Department.

Town of Hadley, 100 Middle Street, Hadley, MA 01035