What types of calls do you get?
The Animal Control Officer (ACO) investigates a wide range of complaints including barking dogs in the neighborhood, or a kitten stuck in a reclining chair, stray dogs attacking joggers, animal cruelty complaints, and everything in between. Animals that have been hit by cars, dogs that have fallen into frozen ponds, dogs that are left out in the snow without shelter or in a car baking in a parking lot in July are just a few of the calls that we respond to. If it has fur or feathers, and sometimes scales, the Animal Control Department answers the call.
Does your agency deal with cats?
Complaints referring to cats are a rapidly growing part of Animal Control. In recent years cats have become the nation’s most popular pet, and, sadly, one of its most neglected and casually disposed of companion animals. This department responds to numerous calls about stray cats, lost and found cats, and colonies of feral cats, cats suffering illness and injury, and owners looking for new homes for their cats.
Does Animal Control handle wildlife?
Reports of injured or diseased wildlife are usually referred to the Dennis Natural Resources Department. They can be reached at Town Hall during business hours at (508) 760-6123. In an emergency, such as a deer hit by a car, during off duty hours the Dennis Police Dept. will respond, and contact Animal Control or a Natural Resources Officer to respond if necessary.
Calls regarding “nuisance” wildlife complaints such as a skunk living under a porch or squirrels in the attic are referred to local companies that are licensed to remove these animals. These companies can be found in the yellow pages or the internet under "Pests". For more information contact the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS)(508-362-0111), or the Massachusetts Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA)(508-775-0940), organizations that offer homeowners tips on living with wildlife and humanely removing or excluding wildlife from your home.
Many calls regarding injured or orphaned wildlife are referred to local nonprofit wildlife rehabilitation organizations.
What happens to the stray dogs that are picked up by Animal Control?
Massachusetts state law requires that all dogs brought in as strays must be held for a period of seven (7) days. The Town of Dennis contracts with the Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL), one of the nation’s oldest and most respected Animal Welfare organizations, to house the stray dogs picked up in Dennis at their Brewster shelter.
If the dog is not claimed by its owner during that time the dog is given to the Animal Rescue League to be evaluated for adoption by the League. Fewer than a dozen dogs are left unclaimed each year in Dennis, and most are adopted into new homes. Those few dogs that are not placed for adoption are usually very old, suffer illness or have severe temperament problems that make them unsafe to place in a home. These dogs are humanely euthanized for public safety and to end the suffering of the dog.