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Mandatory Reporting of Cruelty

Know how to Report Animal Cruelty in Massachusetts - It's the Law!


In accordance with the new PAWS Act...


A veterinarian in Massachusetts, while in the normal course of business, who observes an animal whom he or she knows or reasonably suspects has been the victim of animal cruelty, shall report said suspected animal cruelty to a police officer or special state police officer.



Special Police Officers/Special Law Enforcement Officers



(617) 522-6008 or (800) 628-5808


Animal Rescue League of Boston

(657) 777-2752 or



Local Police Department

Please note that this type of reporting does not pertain to "pet responsibility laws" like barking complaints, loose dogs, dog bites, stray cats, etc., which fall under the purview of local municipal government and their ordinances and are enforced by local Animal Control Officers.


Local Animal Control Officer

Although Animal Control Officers are not the official reporting authority (as required by the Paws Act), the MVMA strongly encourages veterinarians to establish a relationship with the ACO in your community.

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