Written by Jeff Mackey
As we've mentioned recently, PETA is working overtime—literally—to restrict or outlaw the chaining of dogs in the cities that make up its Hampton Roads home turf in Virginia. One of those cities that still hasn't passed an anti-chaining ordinance is Newport News—and that has to change.
Here's why: Just weeks after PETA discussed the possible adoption
of a tethering ban with representatives from the city of Newport News—who declined
to take up any chaining regulations at this time—a PETA fieldworker looking for
animals in need in Newport News found this dog, Weezy, chained in someone's
Dogs aren't objects that can be dumped outside, chained, and
forgotten about—they're sensitive, social beings who require good care and consideration. Like those of many lonely and vulnerable chained dogs whose owners can't be
bothered to spare more than minimal attention or care, Weezy's collar was so
tight that it had become embedded in his neck, resulting in a deep, painful,
and infected wound.
Weezy was seized by law-enforcement authorities and treated
by a veterinarian, and the cruel man responsible for Weezy's suffering has been
charged with cruelty to animals. But there is a way to prevent other dogs from experiencing
this same type of pain: by passing a restriction or an all-out ban on chaining.
PETA's out in front on this issue because its cruelty caseworkers have witnessed time and again how dogs suffer at the end of chains. Chained dogs are psychologically and physically
neglected. They often suffer from exposure, dehydration, starvation, untreated
injuries, maddening flea and tick infestations, flystrike, heartworm disease,
and more. It's not uncommon for chained dogs to hang to death after becoming
entangled in their tether or to accidentally hang themselves on objects around
them. Chaining also puts the
public at risk since chained dogs often unleash their frustration on other people, including children.
Please join PETA in politely urging the Newport News mayor and City Council members to join neighboring Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Hampton, Portsmouth, and
Smithfield in passing an anti-tethering ordinance before another animal suffers
like Weezy. And if your community lacks a chaining ban, please encourage local authorities to take up legislation immediately.
Wow! Less than a month after PETA spoke in front of the City
Council of Portsmouth, Virginia, about the need for legislation to end the continuous
chaining of dogs, officials voted unanimously—that's
seven to zip—in favor of a three-hour limit on chaining in any 24-hour period.
We'd like 24/7, but this is a wonderful change from lifetime chaining!
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Portsmouth is just across the Elizabeth River from PETA's
hometown of Norfolk, and it has now become the latest neighboring community
(and one of many across
to outlaw round-the-clock chaining of dogs. In July, our hard work paid off
when Hampton banned
chaining altogether. At our urging, Norfolk and Virginia Beach had previously enacted
limits on tethering dogs.
What You Can Do
dogs are often at the end of their ropes, both literally and figuratively—miserable,
lonely, and vulnerable to weather extremes and violent predators, not to
mention a significant threat to public safety. Please help chained dogs by working to pass a
chaining ordinance in your community.
you have a general question for PETA and would like a response, please e-mail Info@peta.org. If you need to report cruelty to
an animal, please click
here. If you are reporting an animal in imminent danger and know where to find the
animal and if the abuse is taking place right now, please call your local
police department. If the police are unresponsive, please call PETA
immediately at 757-622-7382 and press 2.
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Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights? Read more.