VASSALBORO — Resident David Jenney was not sure Vassalboro needs the “pooper-scooper” provision included in the proposed animal control ordinance.

Animal Control Officer Howard Morang persuaded him it’s a good idea.

Maybe an occasional pile of dog doo is not a problem, he said; but if a neighbor’s cows broke out and spent the night on your lawn, wouldn’t you like to have the neighbor responsible for cleaning up?

Jenney and Waterville Beagle Club secretary Calvin Beaumier were the only two people to speak at Thursday’s public hearing on the draft ordinance, which will be submitted to voters at Town Meeting in June.

Beaumier was concerned about the prohibition of noisy animals. He asked that it not apply to the beagle club on Gray Road.

The club has run dogs on its 160 fenced acres since the 1950s and ought to be grandfathered under the ordinance, Beaumier said. By an informal agreement, the premises are not used before 6 a.m. or after 10 p.m.

Morang said he receives complaints about the club only at intervals, usually a few weeks after the abutting property changes hands.

Beaumier thinks the club’s prominent sign on the road should warn new neighbors what to expect.

Selectmen agreed to a specific exemption for the beagle club. The ordinance section headed “Animal Noise” will now say no owner can let his or her animal “bark, howl or make other sounds common to its species” for more than 20 minutes steadily or more than an hour intermittently, but the prohibition does not apply:

* if the animal is provoked by trespassers or other legitimate cause;

* to farm animals on a farm, with the proviso that dogs are not farm animals and kennels are not farms; or

* to the Waterville Beagle Club.

Morang answered several other questions about the draft ordinance from Jenney, who was exploring his right to interact with people whose animals he allows on his property.

Morang said if the ordinance is approved, Jenney can ask people to clean up their animals’ droppings. If dogs, cats or other animals are on his property without permission, he can call Morang and ask to have them removed.

The ordinance provides that if Morang seizes an animal that is at large — off its owner’s property and not under his or her control — the owner pays a $25 fee to reclaim it at the Town Office, or a $50 fee if the owner cannot be located immediately and Morang takes the animal to the Augusta Humane Society.

Much of the draft ordinance is taken directly from state law, Morang said. Other provisions are based on the town of Hollis’ ordinance. Morang said a man he talked to in Hollis told him fees for reclaiming pets that were allowed to roam at large have deterred repeat offenders.

Augusta and Waterville news

Get news and events from your towns in your inbox every Friday.


  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.