Rockland: Cracking Down on Unregistered Canines

Roughly 60 dog owners in Rockland could be fined for failing to license their dog.

Rockland Town Clerk Donna Shortall says that the law has been around for quite some time.

“It’s a Massachusetts law and it has been on the books since the 1700′s and it does require that you have to register your dog in the town you live in every single year,” said Shortall.

The town has a way of knowing whether or not you have registered your dog.

“Once we get a Rabies Certificate, which vets automatically have to send us a copy, we enter it into the system. If it is a dog that has already been licensed we can just update their rabies information. If it is a dog that has never been licensed we enter it into the system as an unregistered dog so we have the information that these people do have a dog, we get it right from the vet,” said Shortall.

Registering your dog doesn’t take a lot of work.

“And then on August 1st, I think we were down to 150, I actually called everyone on the list that I have a phone number available. I called them and either spoke to them directly or left a message that I really want to see people license their dog, I really don’t want to see them get fined but when they don’t comply there is really nothing I can do about it,” said Shortall. 

In Rockland if your dog is spayed or neutered than a license is $7, and if not, the license is $10.

Failure to register your dog results in a $50 dollar fine, as well as an additional $100 fine, if your dog is not up to date on rabies vaccines.


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