The Animal Inspector is the local agent of the Massachusetts Bureau of Animal Health and is appointed by the Board of Selectmen. He is responsible for matters of animal health as relates to public safety. The responsibilities of the Animal Inspector include:
The Annual Census of Farm Animals - Yearly state-mandated inspection of properties to count and log the numbers and health of farm animals in the town of Topsfield. Additionally, the Animal Inspector may review vaccine records, habitat and feed stores. This information is filed with the Massachusetts Bureau of Animal Health. During the Topsfield Fair, animal holding facilities at the Fairgrounds are checked frequently and barn owners/managers/users are informed of new state policies.
- Animal Bites - Ordering the quarantine of animals that have bitten a person or other animal.
- Animal Wounds - Ordering the quarantine of animals that have sustained wounds or bites of unknown origin. Veterinarians are required by law to report bites of unknown origin to the Animal Inspector. This is for the safety of the animal and its owners.
- Wild animals - Capture of wild animals that show signs of illness or feral animals that have bitten humans or other domestic animals in order to test for rabies.
- Testing - The Animal Inspector also collects and transfers animals/birds for testing by the Bureau of Animal Health (ie Rabies).