Legislation to ban dog chaining in Pennsylvania has languished in the General Assembly for years.
Breeders have opposed the, fearing it might end the right of a person to take their dog to an outdoor coffee shop and tie them up while they enjoyed a latte or to tether a dog during a show. (It would not.)
Sportsmen raised the alarm, saying they could be cited for having a dog on a leash at a field trial. (Not true.)
Or letting your dog out for a midnight potty break. (The idea of a humane agent hovering around the homes of dog owners who let their pets out for a little relief is laughable.)
Anti-tethering bills are aimed at people who leave their dogs out 24/7, in extreme cold and heat. Forgotten animals languish at the end of metal chains. Their water and food bowls freeze. By law they have to have a dog house - crude boxes or Vari-kennels with three sides count - but often they don't have adequate bedding or protection from the wind. Tethered dogs develop caged-dog habits. I've watched frantic dogs on chains run dirt circle paths around their boxes.
Worst of all, tethered dogs get little to no human interaction. This is bad for the dogs and bad for anyone who comes in contact with them. As the national group, Dogs Deserve Better ,has documented, dogs on chains can be a menace to children - and adults - injuring, and even killing those who come in contact with them.
With no state law on the horizon, one Pennsylvania county humane organization has taken it upon itself to act to protect dogs.
The York County SPCA - using the proposed state bill as a model - is reaching out to municipalities to ban dog chaining on their own, according to a story in today's edition of the York Dispatch.
Read the full story here.