Delaware lawmakers want dogs off the chain

State lawmakers advance a measure that would prohibit keeping a dog tethered for more than 18 hours a day.  

Senate Bill 211 would make it a cruelty to animals offense for owners to keep their dog tied up around the clock.  The state Senate approved the measure in a 17-4 vote Wednesday night.  “Dogs are social animals, and they shouldn’t be left on a tether all of their lives,” said Senator Patricia Blevins, D-Elsmere.  “I’m very pleased the Senate recognized the need to define tethering as animal cruelty.  It is really important not to keep a dog on a chain for all of its life.”

Animal cruelty investigator for the Sussex County SPCA Amy Nicholson testified in favor of the bill during the Senate debate.  She says this measure will help them protect animals who are being mistreated.  “Sometimes there is nothing we can do for an animal that is chained up for years, never let of the chain, never pet, never played with, never given any sort of stimulation because the law only stipulates that you need to have food, water and shelter.”

The bill now moves to the state House.

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