Animal lovers in New Jersey are rejoicing over the passing of a new bill signed into law by Governor Chris Christie. The Governor recently signed more than 50 new bills but this one specifically is targeting the “cruel restraint” of dogs, making it a criminal offense.
The new law seeks to crack down on keeping dogs chained outside for prolonged periods of time unattended, using inhumane restraint methods, and/or tethering during harsh weather conditions. More specifically, a dog can no longer be chained or tethered outside overnight between the hours of 11 pm and 5 am. Additionally, if a dog is chained more than 30 minutes during the day, they must be attached to a lightweight chain or rope that is at least 15 feet long and have access to clean water and adequate shelter. Also, during harsh weather conditions, a dog can’t be tethered outside for more than 30 minutes without supervision.
According to animal advocate Janice Fisher, even though the law goes into effect immediately, dog guardians will be given a chance to adjust to the new laws and they will also be given a warning with time to correct offenses. When it comes to keeping dogs tethered overnight, the state is granting 180 days for guardians to find a safer alternative for their pets.
“Dogs are social animals”, stated Fisher, “a highly social animal and they are not lawn ornaments, so for me, for a dog to be tethered up 24/7, I think, is cruel.”
The Garden State couldn’t agree more and “chain dogs” in New Jersey have a brighter future ahead of them!
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