Earlier this week in Reading, a new ordinance was unanimously passed that prohibits tethering pets outside for a long period of time.
While you can still tether your dog outside a café while you grab your morning coffee or during a quick trip to the market, you cannot have your dog outside for multiple hours, even on private property. This ordinance was created to avoid animal cruelty.
While leaving your pup tethered outside may not sound that bad, it can actually be very stressful for, and harmful to, your dog. Tethering your dog for more than a few minutes alone can give them a massive amount of anxiety because they are alone and seemingly trapped in unfamiliar territory. This could cause them to be aggressive to you and strangers or they may try to run away to find familiar ground.
Depending on the weather, it can actually harm your pup physically to be tethered outside as well. In extreme cold or heat, dogs will not be comfortable and will need a shelter that is climate controlled. While they may have a thick coat or are bred to be in extreme weather, they are still not comfortable remaining outdoors at all times.
If you need to tether your pup, limit it to ten minutes maximum. This will keep your dog safe and from being worried for too long. This should be enough time for you to grab a quick lunch to go or grab a snack from a minute mart.
Never tether your dog while you’re at home. While you may not be thrilled to walk in the rain or snow as they use the bathroom, you should be out there with them for support. They feel most vulnerable when using the bathroom and will seriously benefit from your presence.
If you need to tether a dog outside for long periods of time, it may be time to relocate or consider finding a forever home for your dog. It may be hard to give your best friend to another owner, but if you are unable to properly care for them, it is time to find someone that can.