Mount Dora, Florida

October 2, 2012

Animals may not be tethered unless the guardian is physically present and the animal is within visual range of him or her.

Sec. 18.180 Prohibition of Tethering of Dogs
a. It is a violation of this section for any owner to tether a dog or to confine a dog to a tether, except when:
1. The dog is in visual range of the owner who must also be physically present with the dog and attending to it while it is tethered; and
i. The tether is connected to the dog by a commercially available buckle-type collar or a body harness made of nylon or leather that is of sufficient size to adequately and safely restrain the dog; and
ii. The tether is of a size and weight that is reasonably necessary to safely restrain the dog without placing excessive strain or weight on the dog; and
iii. The dog is not tethered outside in periods of extreme weather, including but not limited to extreme heat or cold, thunderstorms, lightning, tornadoes, tropical storms, or hurricanes.
2. A dog is tethered in a manner and under conditions that do not jeopardize its health, safety, or well-being and the dog is:
i. In attendance at, or participating in, any legal, organized publicly attended event in which both dog and owner are permitted attendees or participants; or
ii. Actively engaged in conduct that is directly related to the business of shepherding or herding cattle or livestock or related to the business of cultivating agricultural products, as long as the restraint is reasonably necessary for the safety of the dog; or
iii. Tethered, chained, tied, or restrained by a veterinarian or groomer while attending to the dog; or
iv. Trained or being trained to act in a law enforcement capacity; or
v. Being lawfully used to actively hunt a species of wildlife in this state, during the hunting season for that species of wildlife; or
vi. Tethered temporarily while being kept in a bona fide humane shelter or at a commercial boarding facility; or
vii. Tethered in accordance with the regulations of a camping or recreational area; or
viii. Being cared for as part of a rescue operation during a natural or man-made disaster; or
ix. Being transported in vehicle.
3. Notwithstanding the exceptions provided above, a dog that is sick or injured cannot be tethered as a means of confinement by the owner nor may a puppy under the age of six (6) months be tethered at any time unless the owner is present and attending to the puppy during the entire time the puppy is tethered.
b. A violation of this section shall be a class II violation for the first offense and a class III violation for any repeat offense within five (5) years of a previous offense. If injury or damage to the dog occurs such that care by a veterinarian is required, then such violation shall be a class III offense for the first offense and a class IV offense for any repeat violation within five (5) years of a previous offense. If the code enforcement board finds the violation to be irreparable or irreversible in nature due to the severe injury or death of a dog due to a violation of this section, then the code enforcement board may impose a fine not to exceed $5,000.00 per violation.

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