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New dog restraint law effective Jan. 18

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On Jan. 18, 2022 a new Texas law will make it illegal for people to leave their dogs chained up outside.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed Senate Bill 5 into law Monday, Oct. 25, that makes the unlawful restraint of a dog a crime in Texas. The law states dogs must have properly fitted collars and bans using chains or heavy weights as restraints. Restraints must also be no shorter than five times the dog’s length.

New law states dogs can’t be left outside without adequate shelter from the weather, must have the ability to avoid standing water and animal waste and have drinkable water. The new law also waives the 24-hour waiting period for law enforcement officers to intervene when inhumane treatment cases are reported.

There are some exceptions, including camping or tying dogs up in a truck bed while running errands

(for is as long as is “reasonably necessary for the owner to complete a temporary task”).

Violations to the law is a Class C misdemeanor for first time offenses, and a Class B misdemeanor for repeat offenders.