Mass. General Laws c.111C § 9A

Emergency treatment and transportation of police dogs ("Nero's Law")

This is an unofficial version of a Massachusetts General Law. For more information on this topic, please see Law about animals.

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Added by St.2022, c.23, § 2, February 15, 2022, effective May 16, 2022.


EMS personnel shall provide emergency treatment to a police dog injured in the line of duty and transport such police dog by ambulance to a veterinary care facility equipped to provide emergency treatment to dogs; provided, however, that EMS personnel shall not transport an injured police dog if providing such transport would inhibit their ability to provide emergency medical attention or transport to a person requiring such services.


The department, in consultation with the Massachusetts Veterinary Medical Association and the department of state police’s K9 unit, shall develop policies and procedures for each region that shall include, but not be limited to: (i) appropriate training of EMS personnel to provide police dogs basic level first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation and life-saving interventions, including, but not limited to, administering naloxone; provided, however, that nothing in this section shall authorize the provision of advanced life support care to a police dog; (ii) safe handling procedures for injured police dogs, including, but not limited to, the use of a box muzzle and response coordination with a law enforcement official trained in handling police dogs; (iii) identification of veterinary facilities that provide emergency treatment for injured police dogs; (iv) decontamination of stretchers, the patient compartment and any contaminated medical equipment after a police dog has been transported by EMS vehicle; and (v) sterilization of the interior of an EMS vehicle before being returned to human service, including, but not limited to, sanitizing all allergens and disinfection to a standard safe for human transport.


The department may grant a waiver of this section if the department determines that compliance poses a safety risk to the public. The department shall develop regulations regarding applications and issuance of such a waiver.

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Last updated: February 15, 2022

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