Stop dog chaining in Nassau County Florida.
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Dear Nassau County Commissioners:
In Nassau County, Florida it is perfectly legal to chain a puppy to a immovable object such as a tree and him leave there - - forever. The only requirement is that he has food, water and a shelter with a floor, roof and three sides. This practice is prevalent throughout this county. Nassau County has yet to pass an anti-tethering ordinance. As one former commissioner stated, "I am sympathetic, but many of my constituents chain their dogs and they would never support this ordinance."
What's so bad about tethering a dog? Dogs are highly social animals, but when they isolated, chained and unable to retreat they suffer adverse behavioral changes putting them in a constant defensive attack mode. That barking dog on a chain is not being protective. He is fearful, defensive and aggressive.
Chained dogs are five times more likely to attack children who want to pet, "the nice doggy" or inadvertently wander within reach of the chain
Tethered-dogs have a horrific life as they are subject to extreme temperature changes, pouring rain and even hurricanes. They are preyed on by mosquitoes, fleas and ticks. They are usually infested with hookworms, roundworms and heartworms. They are susceptible to mange and a host of other diseases. In human terms, tethering is the equivalent of eternal, solitary confinement.
The Humane Society of the United States and numerous animal behaviorists along with the U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) issued a statement in the July 2, 1996, Federal Register against chaining: "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." In 1997, the USDA ruled that people and organizations regulated by the Animal Welfare Act cannot keep dogs continuously chained.
The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) stated "Never tether or chain your dog because this can contribute to aggressive behavior."
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) concluded in a study that the dogs most likely to attack are male, unneutered, and chained.
Commissioner we, the undersigned urge you to pass an anti-tethering ordinance in Nassau County, Florida outlawing this cruel and unnecessary treatment of man's best friend.
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