Starting Next Year it Will Be Illegal to Chain Your Dog Up in Texas
If you're someone that leaves your dog chained up all day, you have a few months to come up with a new plan.
This has been something in the works in Texas for a few years now and was recently vetoed by Abbott in the summer. This morning he officially signed the bill into law and will go into effect January 18, 2022. So what do you have to do to ensure you're not breaking the law?
The law bans chains or heavy weights as restraints. Dog collars must be made of “material specifically designed to be placed around the neck of a dog,” though it does not specify which materials. So this means you can't just tie a chain around the dog's neck with no collar.
Restraints must also be no shorter than five times the dog’s length. The law also says dogs must have shelter from “inclement weather,” which includes “rain, hail, sleet, snow, high winds, extreme low temperatures, or extreme high temperatures.” This also means the chain must be able to reach all of these.
Starting next year, you could face animal cruelty charges if your dog is found in these conditions. Abbott said he originally vetoed the previous bill because Texas was no place for such “micro-managing” and “over-criminalization.”
The bill was approved by wide margins in the House and Senate but received some opposition from rural legislators, who expressed worry that it would make it harder to restrain guard dogs or animals on ranches.
You have a few months to update your outdoor space for your pet to prevent some charges coming your way.