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Texas Governor Signs Bill To Protect Dogs From Suffering On A Chain Outdoors

Published: November 02, 2021 at 06:53 PM Author: Penny Eims



On October 25, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed a bill into law to protect dogs from being chained outdoors for long periods of time, and/or without protection. Texas Senate Bill 5 goes into effect on January 18, 2022, and it includes several rules regarding the unlawful restraint of dogs.

The new law aims to keep dogs from being subjected to pain and suffering while outside. SB 5 prohibits owners from leaving their dogs outside during inclement weather, including extreme heat or cold. It also mandates proper shelter for dogs to protect them from the elements, specifically:

“Adequate shelter” means a sturdy structure: (A) that provides the dog protection from
inclement weather; and (B) with dimensions that allow the dog while in
the shelter to stand erect, sit, turn around, and lie down in a
normal position.

The new law also defines what type of collars dogs are allowed to be wearing. SB 5 states that  “Properly fitted” means, with respect to a collar or harness, a collar or harness that: (A) is appropriately sized for the dog based on the dog’s measurements and body weight; (B) does not choke the dog or impede the dog’s normal breathing or swallowing; and (C) does not cause pain or injury to the dog.

SB 5 defines unlawful restraint of a dog and the various protections which must be in place to keep dogs safe from harm:

Sec. 821.102. UNLAWFUL RESTRAINT OF DOG; OFFENSE. (a) An
owner may not leave a dog outside and unattended by use of a
restraint unless the owner provides the dog access to:
(1) adequate shelter;
(2) an area that allows the dog to avoid standing water
and exposure to excessive animal waste;
(3) shade from direct sunlight; and
(4) potable water.
(b) An owner may not restrain a dog outside and unattended
by use of a restraint that:
(1) is a chain;
(2) has weights attached;
(3) is shorter in length than the greater of:
(A) five times the length of the dog, as measured
from the tip of the dog’s nose to the base of the dog’s tail; or
(B) 10 feet; or
(4) is attached to a collar or harness not properly
fitted.

Pet owners who violate the terms set forth in the law will face a Class C misdemeanor or a Class B misdemeanor for a repeated offense.

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Stellaz1
Stellaz1
11 months ago

Wonderful news. It’s a step in the right direction for more humane laws for all animals. Thank you, Governor Abbot, for recognizing that dogs are sentient beings and should not be treated cruelly. I admire your determination and hope that other states like mine, Kentucky, will begin to see the value of companion animals and learn to appreciate them. And that the days of using dogs that are chained outside are ending and that people are becoming wiser and more compassionate when it comes to all animals. In my eyes and many others, you are a hero. Evil often begins with hurting innocent animals because they have no voice to speak for themselves, and are alone without being seen or knowing what is happening to them. Please continue to work toward passing more humane laws for these innocent beings. “The time is always right to do what is right.” M.L King

robert adams
robert adams
10 months ago

Great news. Something similar should be adopted in every state. Better yet make it illegal to chain a dog up.

Judy
Judy
10 months ago

Why does it say the bill goes into effect January 18, 2021 that date has passed

Bhavya Shah
Admin
Bhavya Shah
10 months ago
Reply to  Judy

Thank you, Judy. That was a typo. It’s fixed now. The law goes into effect in 2022.

Linda Featherstone
Linda Featherstone
10 months ago

Why have a dog to chain it up for its life , what’s the point it can’t protect you on a Chain it can’t protect itself on a CHAIN so
. Why have a dog or a kid or a wife.. What’s the point please tell all here why you would get a dog to put it on a CHAIN

Sherri Robertson
Sherri Robertson
10 months ago

But dogs will still be chained and left out in the cold during winter. Thank you for all you do but still not soon enough.

Kathryn Baker
Kathryn Baker
10 months ago

This is great news! It is also the only thing good that Gov. Abbott has done.

Connie Glynn
Connie Glynn
10 months ago
Reply to  Kathryn Baker

You must be a woke Democrat, Abbott has done lots of good. So many innocent babies are being saved every day since he signed the heartbeat bill.

Dona S Readinger
Dona S Readinger
10 months ago
Reply to  Kathryn Baker

Abbott did this ONLY because of activist pressure from his earlier veto of a bipartisan bill passed to protect outdoor dogs! This is purely political, not because he has a heart for abused animals!

Connie Glynn
Connie Glynn
10 months ago

I love my governor! Don’t mess with Texas ❤

Linda Motschiedler
Linda Motschiedler
10 months ago

I agree that this is a great first step to end the cruel treatment of many dogs in Texas and I applaud the Governor for having the courage to do this. However the people who keep their dogs outside on chains are not suddenly going to stop this behavior because of this new law. It will be ignored, criticized snd even laughed off unless snd until there is enforcement of this new law. Therefore my question to the Governor and others would be are they going to provide enforcement? Are they going to train officers for the specific task of animal cruelty as it relates to this law. Because those types of things and much more will be necessary if this law is to be successful in actually helping any animals. Otherwise it’s just all nice talking points while the animals continue to suffer.
What good is a law if it is not enforced?

CINDY TRAMAGLINO
CINDY TRAMAGLINO
10 months ago

Amen, I AGREE!. IT SHOULD BE A FELONY IN EVERY STATE!!

diane marchand
diane marchand
10 months ago

that is where people need to keep on calling when people violate the law. BE PERSISTANT and call every day if you have to. Eventually the law will be enforced if they get tired of comming out. TAKE PICTURES WITH DATES AND TIMES.!!!

Jane Yost
Jane Yost
10 months ago

Thank you Govenor Abbott! We definitely need more people like you to take animal cruelty/abuse seriously and enact and enforce those laws. Thank you on behalf of all the dogs suffering at the end if ropes and chains.

Pat
Pat
10 months ago
Reply to  Jane Yost

Unfortunately the Governor actually vetoed this bull that was passed by a majority of both Republicans and Democratic legislators earlier this year, claiming that that it was not necessary. The ONLY REASON that he brought it back is because he saw a huge backlash to his decision. If he wasn’t running for Governor and needed animal advocate votes, he could have cared less. Thank goodness for all the people in Texas that called his office to protest, sent emails and voiced their disgust with his initial decision.

Dona S Readinger
Dona S Readinger
10 months ago
Reply to  Pat

Glad someone else is aware of that!

Barbara
Barbara
10 months ago

Good news. Now we just need the laws to be enforced which is always an issue.

diane marchand
diane marchand
10 months ago

awesome! we need this to be A FEDERAL LAW! Across the country Dogs are treated so cruelly and it needs to stop. Living on the end of a chain 24/7 with inadequate conditions Is a horrible way for any living animal to live. ! our County in fl , Levy county , cant even pass ordianance for animal care for 3 years now! GRR so frustrated.!