Decatur, Alabama

March 22, 2021

Fixed point tethering is prohibited. Dogs may be tethered on trolley systems under certain conditions.

Section 4-2.1-Chaining/tethering of dogs.

a. Tethering or chaining refers to the act of securing a dog to a stationary object or stake. This is usually done using a chain, rope, or other device to limit the range of the dog. The City determines that tethering is an inhumane way to contain a dog.

b. Direct point chaining, or tethering of dogs to a stationary object, is prohibited. Dogs may be restrained by means of a trolley system, or a tether attached to a pulley on a cable run, if the following conditions are met:

i. Multiple dogs can be on one cable run provided there is lead stop that allows enough separation as to prevent any possible entanglement.

ii. The tether must be attached to a properly fitting harness or collar worn by the dog. Choke collars, pinch collars and prong collars are prohibited for purposes of tethering a dog to a cable run.

iii. There must be a swivel on at least one end of the tether to minimize tangling of the tether.

iv. The tether and cable run must be of adequate size and strength to effectively restrain the dog. The size and weight of the tether must not be excessive, as determined by the Animal Control officer, considering the age, size and health of the dog. Under no circumstances shall the weight of the tether be more than 25% of the animal’s weight.

v. The length of the tether from the cable run to the dog’s harness must allow access to an exercise area, continuous access to water and shelter, and to some form of shade at all times. The trolley system must be of appropriate configuration to confine the dog to the owner’s property, to prevent the tether from extending over an object or an edge that could result in injury to the dog, and to prevent the tether from becoming tangled with other objects or animals. The runner must be between 4 feet to 7 feet above the ground and at least 15 feet in length and must remain unobstructed as to allow the animal full use of at least 15 continuous feet of the runner. If multiple dogs are attached to one cable, each dog must be provided with at least 15 continuous feet of the runner.

c. Notwithstanding the foregoing, a dog may be tethered while under supervision of an adult person that is presently outside or while actively participating in or attending an organized show, field trial, agility event, herding contest or other similar exposition or event conducted outdoors, of a limited duration, that involves the judging or evaluation of animals, or when under the care and supervision of a licensed veterinarian.

d. In cases of maintenance and repair to existing restraint structures or construction of new constraint structures consistent with this ordinance a person will be able to obtain a temporary tethering permit for a period of fourteen days. A one-time extension will be available for up to one week if determined necessary by the Animal Services Department or its Animal Control Officers. The first time permit shall cost ten dollars. The extension to any related first-time permit shall cost twenty dollars.

e. In all cases, any person who tethers a dog in accordance with this section shall ensure that the animal is tethered in a manner as to prevent injury, strangulation, entanglement or neglect.

f. No person owning or keeping a dog may subject the dog to cruel conditions or inhumane tethering at any time. Cruel conditions and inhumane tethering are defined as, but not limited to, the following conditions:

i. Filthy and dirty confinement conditions, including but not limited to exposure to excessive animal waste, garbage, dirty water, noxious odors, dangerous objects that could injure or kill the dog upon contact, or other circumstances that could cause harm to the dog’s physical health.

ii. Taunting, prodding, hitting, harassing, threatening or otherwise harming a tethered or confined dog.

iii. Subjecting the dog to dangerous conditions, including but not limited to attack by other animals. (Animals in use by law enforcement or those animals that are specifically bred and/or trained for agricultural duties are exempt from this section).


Stay up to date on the latest vegan trends and get breaking animal rights news delivered straight to your inbox!

By submitting this form, you’re acknowledging that you have read and agree to our privacy policy and agree to receive e-mails from us.

Get the Latest Tips—Right in Your Inbox
We’ll e-mail you weekly with the latest in vegan recipes, fashion, and more!

By submitting this form, you’re acknowledging that you have read and agree to our privacy policy and agree to receive e-mails from us.