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Do You Know What the Animal Control Officer Does?
Maine law says: "A Municipality, through its Animal Control Officer (ACO), shall control domesticated animals that are a source of complaint in the community” and “shall control animals that pose a threat to public health or safety”. By Selectmen-approved protocols, the ACO is expected to respond immediately in the following circumstances.
1. A person is bitten by a dog.
The ACO will respond to ensure that the dog is current on rabies vaccination and issue a quarantine notice to the dog owner, if known, and encourage the victim to seek medical attention.
2. An injured dog (usually hit by car).
If the dog owner is known and will be transporting the dog themselves, the ACO need not be called, but should be advised of the incident to ensure the dog is licensed and owners informed regarding the at large statute. If the owner is not known, the ACO should be contacted to handle the transport.
3. Wild animal (fox, raccoon, skunk, coyote, bat) has bitten or had contact with a person.
The ACO should be called out to attempt to locate the animal and if successful, collect the animal and send it to a health laboratory in Augusta for testing. The ACO will advise the person bitten to seek medical treatment and the doctor will determine if shots are necessary. In most cases, if the animal cannot be located the doctor will begin rabies treatment of the victim.
4. General wild animal calls (there is a fox in my back yard etc.).
If the animal is not posing an immediate risk to humans, the Game Warden Service should be contacted at 207-657-3030. If the animal is acting aggressively toward humans or domestic animals, the ACO can be contacted.
Other situations, such as habitual barking dog complaints, may be handled by the ACO, if on duty. If not, disturbance complaints should be referred to the Maine State Police at 207-657-3030 or 1-800-228-0857 or the Cumberland County Sheriff’s Office at 207-774-1444 or 1-800-266-1444.
|Zachery Copp||Animal Control Officer||(207) 829-6391|