Manatee County, Florida

May 2012

This ordinance bans unattended tethering, specifies the legal methods of tethering, and bans the tethering of animals younger than 6 months as well as tethering in extreme weather.

Sec. 2-4-8. Humane treatment of animals
(d) Under no circumstances shall a person improperly tether any animal. It shall be unlawful for any owner to tether an animal outdoors, except when all of the following conditions are met:
(1) The animal is within visual range of the owner, and the owner is located outside with the animal.
(2) The tether is connected to the animal by a buckle-type collar or a body harness made of nylon or leather, not less than one inch in width. This shall prohibit any pinch, prong or choke-type collars.
(3) The tether has the following features:
a. It is at least five (5) times the length of the animal’s body, as measured from the tip of the nose to the base of the tail;
b. It terminates at both ends with a swivel;
c. It does not weigh more than one-eighth the animal’s weight and shall not be tethered with a tow chain, log chain, padlock chain, or any other type of tether unsuitable for the animal’s size; and
d. Is free of tangles.
(4) The animal is tethered in such a manner as to prevent injury, strangulation or entanglement.
(5) The animal is not outside during a period of extreme weather, including without limitation, extreme heat or near-freezing temperatures, thunderstorms, tornadoes, tropical storms or hurricanes.
(6) The animal has access to water, shelter and dry ground.
(7) The animal is at least six (6) months of age. Puppies, kittens and other young animals shall not be tethered.
(8) The animal is not sick or injured.
(9) Pulley, running line, or trolley systems are at least fifteen (15) feet in length and are less than seven (7) feet off the ground and in a manner that will not allow the animal to reach within the property of another person, a public walkway, or right-of-way.
(10) If there are multiple animals, each animal is tethered separately.

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