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New Tethering Ordinance For Dogs In Charlotte

A new tethering ordinance is set to take effect in Charlotte tomorrow that regulates how dogs can be restrained outdoors. The law requires that dogs be tethered with at least a ten-foot chain in an area without any obstructions that might cause them to get tangled or even lead to strangulation. Choke or pinch-style collars are no longer allowed when dogs are tethered. Instead, dog owners must use buckle collars or harnesses. Outside pens must be at least fifty-square feet per dog. The law is a compromise, although Donna Canzano of the Humane Society of Charlotte hopes that tethering will eventually be banned altogether. "Personally, I'd love it to see them not tethered at all and have utilizing fences and things like that," says Canzano, "There's a great organization here in Charlotte called the Coalition to Unchain Dogs, and they actually will come to your house and build a fence for free to keep your animals contained, so hopefully people can take advantage of their services." The law does not say anything about owners who keep their dogs in indoor kennels or crates. It also makes exceptions for people who live in apartments, townhomes, and other housing units that have small lots. They are allowed to use smaller chains, but only for short periods of time. There are tethering laws throughout much of North Carolina. Durham and New Hanover Counties ban it all together, but most cities or counties with tethering laws regulate rather than ban the practice. Raleigh, for example, has a law that limits tethering to three hours and requires that dogs have access to food and water during that period.