Apply to be a Problem Animal Control agent

Problem Animal Control (PAC) agents are vital when animals pose a threat to personal safety. Once you pass the PAC agent requirements, becoming a certified agent is easy.
PAC licenses are valid from the time you buy it until December 31st. You can renew your license for the next year starting on December 1st.


The Details   of Apply to be a Problem Animal Control agent

What you need   for Apply to be a Problem Animal Control agent

If possible, complete steps 1-5.

1. Pass a Trapper Education course

In order to legally trap on someone else's property, you need a valid Massachusetts trapping license and a trap registration number. To get these, you first need to successfully complete a Trapper Education course (in Massachusetts or any state in the U.S., or online).

The Massachusetts Trapper Education course teaches Best Management Practices for trapping furbearers. The course covers basic techniques, legal methods, safety, and trapping ethics. MassWildlife offers Trapper Education Courses 3-4 times a year in different parts of the state. You should be prepared to travel to another part of the state to take the course. To be notified about upcoming courses, fill out a course notification form online or call the Hunter Education Program at (508) 389-7820.

You may complete the Massachusetts Trapper Education course. Alternatively, we accept all state trapper education certifications as well as the certificate earned by completing the North American Basic Trapper Course available online.

The Massachusetts course includes the training required to use Bailey and Hancock traps. Both a Trapper Education Certificate and a Bailey-Hancock Certificate are issued to students who successfully complete a Massachusetts Trapper Education course.

2. Get a trapping license

After passing a Trapper Education course, you can purchase a trapping license online through the MassFishHunt system or in person at a license vendor. A trapping license costs $36 for MA residents.

3. Get a Trap Registration Certificate number
  • To apply for your Trap Registration Certificate for the first time, contact Bob Arini at
  • To renew your Trap Registration Certificate, log into MassFishHunt and click on Buy Licenses.

Trap Registration Certificates must be renewed every 2 years. To renew, log into MassFishHunt and click on Buy Licenses. There is a fee of $14 for an initial Trap Registration Certificate, and an $14 renewal fee.

4. Pass a written examination

The exam covers biology, handling, capture techniques, animal welfare, diseases, and parasites. You can prepare for the exam using the PAC Handbook available through MassWildlife. To get a copy of the PAC Handbook, send a check for $15 payable to the MA Division of Fisheries and Wildlife to:

PAC Handbook
1 Rabbit Hill Road
Westborough, MA 01581

When you are ready, you can take the Problem Animal Control exam at any MassWildlife location. Call the MassWildlife office nearest you to schedule a time to take the exam.

5. Fill out the application for a Problem Animal Control Permit

When you have passed the exam and you have your trap registration number, complete and send in the PAC application. At this point you must provide the customer ID number located on your trapping license (from step 2) and your Trap Registration Certificate number (from step 3).

6. Buy your Problem Animal Control license

If all of your applications materials are in order, MassWildlife will activate the option to buy a PAC license in the MassFishHunt system (up until this point, customers will not have the option of adding a PAC license to their cart). You can then buy your PAC license ($100 for Massachusetts residents, $200 for non-residents).

Fees   for Apply to be a Problem Animal Control agent

Name Fee Unit
Trapping License $36 each
Trap Registration Certificate $14 each
Problem Animal Control License for instate agents $100 each
Problem Animal Control License for out-of-state agents $200 each

How to apply   Apply to be a Problem Animal Control agent

Download the attached PAC application. Complete the application and mail it to:

1 Rabbit Hill Road
Westborough, MA 01581

Do not fill out the form until you have completed all the criteria.

More info   for Apply to be a Problem Animal Control agent

If you plan to use a firearm to euthanize animals you must complete these additional steps
  1. Get a current hunting license. If you have never had a hunting license before, click here to learn more about the process.
  2. Get a gun license. You can find out more about this process from your municipal police department.
If you want to be able to remove Coyotes:

To become certified in coyote removal you must successfully complete a coyote class offered by MassWildlife. Only PAC agents who have completed this training may remove problem coyotes. However, any PAC agent can be hired to harass coyotes on behalf of a homeowner. For more details about the coyote class for PAC agents, please call MassWildlife at (508) 389-6300.

Downloads   for Apply to be a Problem Animal Control agent

Contact   for Apply to be a Problem Animal Control agent

Help Us Improve  with your feedback

Please do not include personal or contact information.