End 24/7 Tethering of Dogs in Pennsylvania

Take action to help pass SB 373

Senator Richard Alloway + 18 co-sponsors have introduced SB 373, which has already passed the Senate 45-4!. Please call, write, e-mail,  or uses social media to contact your State Representative  to request their support of  SB 373.  Your message can be short, stating simply “I am a constituent – please support SB 373, the inclement weather/anti-tethering bill.  Please follow up by making a call to Representative Ron Marsico, Chairman of the Judiciary Committee, to ask him to pass SB 373 from his committee: Rep. Marsico: (717) 783-2014 or rmarsico@pahousegop.com.

SB 373 will:

  • Ensure that a dog is removed from the tether in periods of inclement weather.
  • Provide minimum standards for length and type of tether.
  • Ban the use of poke, pinch, or pronged collars which pose a danger to the dog while tethered.
  • Ensure that the dog may only be tethered long enough for the owner to complete a temporary task and that the owner may not leave the dog unattended and tethered.

Facts about tethering:

What does “chaining” or “tethering” of dogs mean?                      

These terms refer to the practice of fastening a dog to a stationary object or stake, usually in the owner’s backyard, as a means of keeping the animal under control. These terms do not refer to the periods when an animal is walked on a leash.

Why is tethering dogs inhumane?

Dogs are naturally social animals who thrive on interaction with people and other animals. A dog kept chained in one spot for hours, days, months or even years suffers immense psychological damage. An otherwise friendly and docile dog, when kept continuously chained, becomes neurotic, unhappy, anxious and often aggressive.

In many cases, the necks of chained dogs become raw and covered with sores, the result of improperly fitted collars and the dogs’ constant yanking and straining to escape confinement. Dogs have even been found with collars embedded in their necks, the result of years of neglect at the end of a chain.

In addition to The ASPCA, The Humane Society of the United States and numerous animal experts, even the U. S. Department of Agriculture issued a statement in the July 2, 1996, Federal Register against tethering: “Our experience in enforcing the Animal Welfare Act has led us to conclude that continuous confinement of dogs by a tether is inhumane. A tether significantly restricts a dog’s movement. A tether can also become tangled around or hooked on the dog’s shelter structure or other objects, further restricting the dog’s movement and potentially causing injury.”

What effects does tethering have on the community?

Banning permanent tethering makes for safer neighborhoods and happier dogs all without adding burden to our animal control agency. – The Center for Disease Control (CDC) reports chained dogs are three times more likely to bite resulting in greater incidences of dog attacks and bites to humans and animals. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) also concluded in a study that the dogs most likely to attack are male, un-neutered, and chained.

Find your State Legislators.

More articles/information on tethering:

Pa. bills would outlaw dog tethering, revenge pet cruelty

Tethering – on its Last Thread?

Table of State Tethering Laws.

Township Tethering Ordinance (sample language)

Philly Dawg York Co. borough approves landmark anti-tethering law.

Philly Dawg: Harrisburg Poised to be the first PA City with anti-tethering law


  1. Animal bills fast-tracking through PA legislature | Welcome to the McKean County SPCA - October 6, 2013

    […] bills on Dinniman and Alloway’s platter include: banning 24/7 dog tethering and closing the loophole that allows kennel  owners to transfer ownership to a family member, and […]

  2. Animal Protection: Where Does Your State Rank? | Common Law - January 20, 2014

    […] passing laws restricting the tethering of dogs. My home state, Pennsylvania, should take note, as an anti-tethering bill has been introduced but not voted on. Instead, individual municipalities have been passing their own […]

  3. Pet Lovers: End 24/7 Tethering of Dogs | One Web Strategy - February 23, 2015

    […] http://humane-pa.org/current-legislation-2/fact-sheets-about-pending-bills-2015/hb-41sb-520-tetherin… […]

  4. End 24/7 Tethering of Dogs in Pennsylvania | For Yorkie Bichons, and their humans - February 23, 2015

    […] http://humane-pa.org/current-legislation-2/fact-sheets-about-pending-bills-2015/hb-41sb-520-tetherin… […]

  5. Senate Bill 373 Will Save Lives - Humane Society of Greene County - April 12, 2015

    […] Read Fact Sheets About Pending Bills […]


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