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Contact Info

Animal Control
c/o Charlton Police Dept.
85 Masonic Home Road
Charlton, MA 01507
P: 508-248-2266
F: 508-248-1039

The Municipal Animal Shelter is located at 15 Old Town Road, Charlton, MA.

Office Hours




Animal Control Directory

Charlton ACOs are certified through the Animal Control Officers' Association of Massachusetts (ACOAM) Certification Course.

Ann Sellew
Animal Control Officer
Brent Sellew
Assistant ACO
Lisa Westwell
Assistant ACO
Animal Control

Municipal Animal ShelterCharlton Animal Control Officers (ACOs) are appointed annually by the Board of Selectmen. ACOs are responsible for enforcement of State and local laws and regulations related to animal control. In addition, ACOs will oversee the care and control of domestic animals and, in some instances, wildlife. ACOs respond to dog, cat, and wildlife calls and can provide numerous valuable resources appropriate for each situation.

Dogs: Catch or pick up stray and/or injured dogs. Return to owner (if known) or impound. Issue warning letters, citations, and/or fines, when appropriate.

Cats: Work with residents who find stray cats by maintaining a lost and found list. Reunite with owner if possible. Assist owners with lost cats. Refer to other agency when appropriate.

Wildlife: Respond when needed to reports of injured wildlife. Transport sick or injured wildlife to an appropriate wildlife facility when necessary.

All Domestic Animals and Wildlife: Investigate complaints from the public and respond to each complaint according to the merit of the situation. Respond to reports of domestic or wild animals in distress/trapped in unusual places. Please note that a person or organization duly licensed in removing nuisance animals must be notified in situations that necessitate trapping. Work closely with the Animal Inspector on any suspected rabies exposure or other suspected infectious diseases.

Wildlife Notice: Charlton Animal Control has been receiving many calls regarding raccoons, skunks, foxes and other wildlife. ACOs assist only with sick or injured wildlife, when possible. It is ILLEGAL to relocate wildlife. If you require assistance with nuisance wildlife, please click here to contact a MA licensed Problem Animal Control Agent. Visit MA Department of Fisheries and Wildlife for specific wildlife information. Thank you.

Charlton Lost and Found Pets List

Charlton Lost and Found Pets
Email your lost pet with photo to Animal Control or call 508-248-2266 with info for posting. If you recognize a found pet, please call us so that we can reunited it with its owner.
Lost Cat: Short haired black and white, adult, neutered male. Simon was wearing collar with tags when he went missing on or about November 26, 2014 from Muggett Hill Road near Bay Path RVTHS. Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Found Cat: Short haired brown Tiger found on Partridge Hill Road / Lelandville Road on November 28, 2014. This cat has been in the area for the last two months. Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 to ID and/or claim.
Lost Cat: Maine Coon mix, long haired, brown, black and white, 6 years old, named Ranger. Missing since November 13, 2014 from Pheasant Lane (off Carroll Hill Road). Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Short haired black, neutered male, 18 months old, named Bruce. Missing since October 23, 2014 in the area of Dresser Hill Road. Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Short haired all black with one eye, named Sparrow. Missing since Thursday, October 14, 2014 from Potter Village Road / Partridge Hill Road area of South Charlton Reservoir. Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Short haired white with brown tiger markings, neutered male, 3 years old, pink nose, microchipped, named Hue. Missing since Monday, October 6, 2014 from Hycrest Road (Carroll Hill Rd area) . Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Long haired orange with white chest/belly and green eyes, neutered male, 10 years old, named Nacho. Missing since September 30, 2014 from Cranberry Meadow Road. Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Short haired mostly gray with some tan, wearing purple flea collar, spayed female, 3 years old, named Abby. Missing since Wednesday, September 24, 2014 from Old Worcester Road. Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Short haired white, neutered male, 2 years old, named Marble. Missing from Sunset Drive / Glen Echo Lake area since Tuesday, September 23, 2014. Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Short haired black and white (tuxedo), spayed female, 2 years old, named Boo. Missing since September 6, 2014 from Osgood Road. Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Short haired all black, neutered male, 5 years old, named Shadow. Missing since August 28, 2014 from Brookfield Road near intersections of Stafford St., Route 20, Power Station Roads. Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Short haired orange tabby, neutered male, 1 year old, named Pumpkin. Missing from Buffum Road since Saturday, August 23, 2014. Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Short haired black and white with white ring around tip of tail, spayed female, 5 years old, named Ringer. Missing from Hycrest Road (off of Hammond Hill Road) since Tuesday, August 19, 2014. Please call Chris at 508-248-9117 or Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Short haired black, male, 2 years old, green eyes, wearing red collar, named Bobo. Missing from Charlton Gas/Dunkins Donuts on Route 20 across from Teds Package since Wednesday, August 13, 2014. Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Short haired black, female, 12 years old, 8 lbs., named Isabella. Missing from the MA Pike Westbound rest area in Charlton (J Hammond Road/Stafford Street side) since Tuesday, August 5, 2014. Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Maine Coon, spayed female, 2 years old, named Nuggums. Missing from Fitzgerald Road since Friday, August 1, 2014. Please call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Short haired black and white (Tuxedo), neutered adult male, named Pony Boy aka Pone. Missing since Tuesday, July 22, 2014 from #10 Schoolhouse Road near Heritage Country Club. Please call John at 978-815-5116 or Charlton Animal Control with any info or sightings.
Lost Cat: Long haired black, spayed female cat named Leapling. Missing since June 19, 2014 from Pumpkin Lane (Prindle Hill area). She is primarily indoor and skittish. Please call Charlton Animal Control with any info or sightings.

Dog / Kennel Licenses

Dog licenses and Kennel Licenses must be obtained annually at the Town Clerk’s Office or by mail using the Dog License Mail In Form or Kennel License Application. The dog license period is January 1 to December 31. The owner or keeper of a dog six (6) months old or over is required to obtain a dog license from the Town Clerk and the license must be attached to a collar or harness of said dog per MGL, Ch. 140, § 137.

When applying for a dog license the applicant must show proof, by a licensed veterinarian's certificate, that the dog has been vaccinated against rabies, as required by Massachusetts General Laws, Chapter 140, Sections 137 and 145B.

The Charlton Animal Control Bylaws (as amended at May 20, 2013 Annual Town Meeting) may also be viewed in the Town Clerk'’s Office. Please be advised that Charlton has a 24 hour leash law.

Fees are:
Male: $20.00
Female: $20.00
Senior Citizen (65 and over): $17.00
Neutered Male: $10.00
Spayed Female: $10.00
Senior Citizen (65 and over): $8.00
A late fee of $10.00 will be added to license fees if you fail to license by March 1.
Any person seventy (70) years of age or older, upon proof of age, shall be exempt from the annual fee for one dog, per household, per year. The owner of a kennel license, age seventy (70) years of age or older, shall be excluded from this exemption. (Per Town’s acceptance of the provision of Mass. Gen. Law Chapter 140, Section 139 (c) at the May 20, 2013 Annual Town Meeting.)
Substitute Tag: $1.00
Transfer License: $1.00
Kennel fees are:
Four dogs or less $35.00
5-10 dogs $75.00
11-25 dogs $100.00
26 or more dogs $200.00
A late fee of $50.00 will be added to kennel license fees if you fail to license by March 1.

Dog owners who fail to license will be subject to a $50 failure to license citation per dog given by the Animal Control Officer. Failure to pay this citation within twenty-one (21) days from the date issued will result in a summons to District Court.

Please notify the Town Clerk if you no longer have your dog or your dog has passed away. Failure to do so may result in a failure to license citation.

Review all Charlton Animal Control Bylaws (as amended at May 20, 2013 Annual Town Meeting).

Articles and Brochures

Got Cats?
Hot Weather Tips
Cold Weather Tips
Charlton Animal Control Brochure
Preparing Your Pets for Emergencies Makes Sense

Adopting a Pet

Charlton Animal Control does not currently have an adoption program. Instead, we work with local shelters that accept our unclaimed dogs and cats into their adoption programs. The shelters do age appropriate vet work prior to putting the animals up for adoption. Charlton Animal Control will occassionally post animals available for adoption on our petfinder site as a courtesy and thank you to the assisting shelter. Contact information for the shelter that has the animal is provided so please read carefully. Visit your local shelters and thanks for adopting a homeless pet!

Donations to Charlton Animal Control

Animal Care and Rescue Fund
    The Animal Care and Rescue Fund helps defray medical expenses incurred for sick or injured domestic animals in the care of Charlton Animal Control. Contributions to this fund will ensure that dogs, cats, and other domestic animals receive the quality veterinary care that they need, such as medications, tests, vaccinations, and procedures.


    To donate, make checks payable to: Town of Charlton with "Animal Care and Rescue Fund" in the memo line and mail to:

    Charlton Animal Control
    c/o Charlton Police Department
    85 Masonic Home Road
    Charlton, MA 01507

    We are in need of the following supplies:
    • Dog and Cat Toys
    • Cat Chow
    • Kitten Chow
    • Canned cat food (Friskies Turkey and Giblets is a favorite)
    • SnuggleSafe® Heatpads with regular covers - we could use two of them to keep kittens warm
    • Litter (preferably non-clumping and cedar free)

    Donations may be left in the Board of Selectmen's Office, 37 Main Street, Charlton, MA during regular office hours. Questions? Call Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266. Thanks to all who have donated!!
Feral Cats/Kittens Resources

Semi-feral (semi-wild) or feral (wild) cats/kittens are domestic felines who are not friendly and living in the wild. They do not include friendly stray cats/kittens. They do include feral colonies, ie, a group of wild cats that live near dumpsters or other food sources, and barn cats who are accustomed to living outdoors on farms and catching mice and other small rodents. You should never attempt to pick up a cat/kitten that you think might not be friendly. Cat bites and scratches expose you to rabies and other diseases. Charlton Animal Control can help you determine if a cat is friendly or semi-feral/feral and which option would be best for the situation.

If you are aware of feral cat colonies in Charlton or if you are a barn owner with a feral cat or barn cat overpopulation problem there are two solutions:

1. Trap Spay/Neuter and Release (TNR). Call Charlton Animal Control for info.
2. Trap and Euthanize. For info: Charlton Animal Control (on case by case basis)

Charlton Animal Control has several traps available for residents use.

Lost and Found Pet Tips and Resources

The best way to ensure that your lost pet will find its way home is to always have a collar with identification tags affixed. The Charlton Dog Restraint and Regulation By-Law, Section 2. Licenses and tags requires that all dogs wear collars with license attached. Cats who are indoor/outdoor may wear a break-away collar with an ID tag. Another option for both dogs and cats is micro chipping. Microchips are small computer chips (about the size of a grain of rice) that are injected under the skin, typically between the shoulder blades. Each microchip has a unique ID number associated with it and the number corresponds to owner information on file with the microchip company. If your dog or cat is picked up as a stray, Charlton Animal Control, most local shelters, and many veterinarian offices have scanners that can read the chip and then contact the pet's owner. Talk to your vet or a local shelter about micro chipping.

If your pet is missing or if you find a stray pet, follow these steps:
  • Notify Charlton Animal Control immediately by calling 508-248-2266
  • Notify surrounding ACOs and local shelters
  • Place a lost or found ad in the local newspaper
  • Create a flyer, with a photo if possible, and post it around town
  • Go door to door with the flyer to see if the animal belongs to anyone
  • For lost dogs: Lost Dog Search
  • For lost cats: Cats in the Bag

If you think your pet has been stolen:

Low Cost Spay/Neuter, Vaccination, and Microchipping Programs

Please Spay/Neuter Massachusetts Animal Fund: Do you have a cat or dog that needs to be spayed/neutered? Check out the Massachusetts Animal Fund to see if you qualify for a voucher to have your pet fixed FREE. If you do, contact Charlton Animal Control at 508-248-2266 (or the Animal Control Officer in your town) and they can submit a voucher request on your behalf. For more info, visit Mass Animal Fund. Thank you for helping us stop pet overpopulation!

The following low cost spay/neuter and/or vaccination programs are available for cats and dogs. Some include heartworm/lyme testing for dogs and FELV/FIV testing for cats as well as microchipping. Please contact the appropriate organization for more information, pricing, and participating veterinarians:

1. Second Chance Animal Shelter, 508-637-1333 (North Brookfield, MA)
2. CatSnip Clinics thru Second Chance Fund for Animal Welfare
3. Worcester Animal Rescue League, 508-853-0030 (Worcester, MA)
4. PETCO, 508-721-2241 (Auburn, MA)
5. SpayUSA, 800-248-SPAY (National)
6. MSPCA SNAP 617-522-7400 (Boston, MA)
7. Friends of Animals, 800-321-7387
8. Alliance for Animals, 617-268-7800, (Boston, MA)
9. Concerned Citizens for Animals, (413) 565-5383 (Springfield, MA)

Re-homing Your Pet

We believe that pets are for life. But we also understand that there are times when you may need to rehome your cat or dog (or other small animal). Here are some tips if you need to find your pet a new home:
  • If your pet was adopted from a shelter, call that shelter and inquire about their return policy.
  • Contact local animal shelters and see if they can accept your pet into their adoption program. Most shelters have waiting lists so don't wait until the last minute to call.
  • Call your vet and see if they can help you place the pet.
Wildlife Resources

Charlton Animal Inspector - The Animal Inspector should be contacted if you find a wild animal that is behaving in an unusual or aggressive manner as it may be exhibiting signs of rabies. DO NOT try to catch or touch an animal that looks sick. The Animal Inspector will be able to assist residents by evaluating the situation and advising accordingly.

Charlton Wildlife Committee - The Charlton Wildlife Committee is available to assist residents with wildlife issues through education on applicable laws, alternatives for resolution of problems, and sources of financial assistance.

Mass Division of Fisheries and Wildlife

MassWildlife - Moving Wildlife is Illegal - Find out why moving wildlife is illegal, ineffective and harmful.

MassWildlife - Wildlife Rehabilitation - Wildlife rehabbers care for sick, injured or orphaned wildlife until they are healthy enough to be returned to the wild. For instructions on what to do if you find a sick/injured/abandoned wild animal, visit Wildlife Rehabilitators' Association of Massachusetts. The closest rehabilitator is Tufts University Wildlife Clinic, Grafton, MA, 508-839-7918.

MassWildlife - Problem Animal Control - According to the MassWildlife website, "PAC permits authorize the handling of skunk, muskrat, raccoon, weasel, red fox, gray fox, porcupine, Norway rat, mice, voles, red, gray and flying squirrel, opossum, chipmunk, rabbit, woodchuck, snapping turtle, moles, pigeon, house sparrow, starling and certain species of bats. Individuals with damage caused by beaver flooding must contact their local Board of Health for a determination and necessary permitting. Damage caused by migratory birds and other birds such as woodpeckers, which are protected under both state and federal law, require a permit from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (413.253.2403)."

MassWildlife - Turtle Information and Conservation Tips

MSPCA's Intruder Excluder - An interactive guide for detecting and humanely resolving confluicts with unwanted household and garden visitors in three simple steps.

Turtle Rescue League - for all your turtle related questions!

Charlton has a 24 hour leash law.

Charlton Lost/Found Pets List

Attention Puppy/Dog Owners: Parvovirus outbreak in Lowell and Springfield. Parvo is highly contagious among dogs and spread by dogs eating the poop of infected dogs. The general symptoms of parvovirus are lethargy, severe vomiting, loss of appetite and bloody, foul-smelling diarrhea. See: ASPCA's Parvovirus Page for more info. Prevent parvo by keeping your dogs, especially puppies, up to date on vaccinations. The common distemper vaccination series includes a vaccine for parvo. Talk to your vet.

2014 Dog License are available in the Town Clerk's office or by mail in request. $50 fine per dog for failure to license.

Cat/Dog FREE Spay/Neuter Voucher Program for qualified MA residents: Mass Animal Fund

Pit Fix: Second Chance Animal Shelter offers low cost spay/neuter for Pits. Call 508-637-1333 for an appointment.

Pit Fix: Worcester Animal Rescue League has a grant to spay/neuter Pits owned by folks who can't afford the cost of surgery. See if you meet the criteria to take advantage of this program!

Got Cats? Second Chance Animal Shelter has low cost spay/neuter programs!

Black Bear
Learn about Black Bears

Wish List Items: Friskies canned cat food, Purina Cat Chow, Purina or Iams Kitten Chow, disposable vinyl or latex gloves, paper towels.

If you are in need of a dog house or dog/cat carrier, please call us at 508-248-2266.

Forms and Documents

FAQs I need info on... Links MA Animal Laws Wildlife Other