Press Release: Chaining Dogs Makes Attacks More Likely

Updated: Jul 18, 2014 12:41 PM

Contact: Lydia Zaidman
Phone: 718-791-5493

Chain Free Austin (*Update: link no longer available, please visit related organization Action for Animals Austin)
Contact: Timothy Verret
Phone: 512-879-7437

March 30, 2009

Local Humane Groups Call Attention to Dangers of Chaining and Tethering Dogs

Joint Statement from Love-A-Bull and Chain Free Austin

In the wake of the tragic chained dog attack on a child in Luling, Texas, local education/advocacy organizations, Love-a-Bull and Chain Free Austin are calling on local and state officials in Luling and other communities to support a ban on the dangerous practice of chaining and tethering dogs. Austin’s anti-tethering ordinance took effect on October 1, 2007, and should be used as a model for other cities to implement.

The American Veterinary Medical Association warns “Never tether or chain your dog because this can contribute to aggressive behavior.” A study commissioned by the Centers for Disease Control found that chained dogs are 2.8 times more likely to bite.

There is no established correlation between chained dog attacks and breed. A chained dog will develop behavioral problems and become dangerously territorial, regardless of the breed.

Love-A-Bull and Chain Free Austin urge dog owners to bring their dogs inside the home to live whenever possible. Living with the family provides critical socialization for the dog, and protects the dog from severe weather and other stressful conditions.

When living indoors is not possible, dogs should be kept in a secure and humane fenced enclosure. The enclosure should be well shaded, with a ventilated doghouse and a constant supply of fresh water. The enclosure should provide plenty of space for the dog to roam and exercise. The enclosure should be sturdily built and secured with a lock so a child cannot enter unsupervised.

When a dog is kept outdoors, daily socialization and love become even more important to the dog’s well-being, and to the safety of the community.

It is imperative that responsible dog ownership involve awareness of how chaining can lead to serious accidents, and that proper supervision of any dog is crucial. Please remember: A chain will not prevent a small child from wandering too close to an unfamiliar dog. A secure fenced enclosure will.

At least 21 communities in the United States have outlawed chaining and tethering dogs, including Austin, Big Spring, Dallas, Electra, Fort Worth, Georgetown, and Irving, Texas.

For more information on Austin’s ordinance, please visit


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