Austin, Texas, Could Ban Dog Tethering

City is considering an ordinance to prohibit the chaining of dogs to posts.

Austin, Texas, may be on the verge of becoming the latest American city, and the third in Texas, to ban tethering of dogs for lengthy amounts of time.

On Dec. 19, the Austin Animal Advisory Commission met to discuss the language of the ordinance that would outright ban the chaining or tethering of unattended dogs.

Current city law allows dogs to be chained for up to eight hours, but studies have shown that a chained dog is almost three times as likely to bite.

The commission is also considering a proposal that would require that any dog over 6 months old and left unattended outside be in an enclosure of at least 150 square feet, essentially the dimensions of 10-foot by 15-foot kennel.

Eleven other American cities have already banned chaining dogs, including two in Texas. And on Jan. 1, 2007, a statewide law goes into effect in California banning dog tethering more than three hours a day.

Also, earlier this month, a Virginia legislator said he would introduce state legislation similar to California’s next month.

The Austin City Council is expected to receive a draft of the proposed ordinance from the commission sometime in January.

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