Tag Archives: public health

Will you be an advocate for outside dogs in your community?

Want to be a champion for chained dogs?

Is it legal in your community to abandon dogs to the backyard in both plummeting, winter temperatures and sweltering, summer heat? 

Why not take initiative where you live to see a tethering ordinance passed? 

Two, huge paws up!

Two, huge paws up to the many, proactive, Ohio communities that have already passed common sense legislation!  Tethering ordinances exist in more than thirty-six, Ohio jurisdictions and more than twenty states.

Most of the Ohio ordinances are based on the Cleveland ordinance, linked here. 


(Cleveland ordinance)


(Columbus ordinance)

The Cincinnati, tethering ordinance was passed and went into effect on October 12, 2016. It is enforced by the Cincinnati Police Department. 

Common tethering ordinances do not allow the animal to be tied outside in extreme weather, between 10 PM – 6 AM, and when the owner is not home.

Often, these ordinances are quickly passed because dedicated city leaders understand the importance not only of protecting their animals, but also safeguarding their residents against nuisance and aggressive behavior, associated with endlessly chained animals. 

Please note that Ohio counties cannot pass a tethering ordinance.  Each jurisdiction within the county must pass the ordinance on its own.

      Promoting Public Safety

Tethering ordinances are good for both our animals and our communities.  They are common sense requirements  for the endlessly tethered dogs, who lead lives of frustration, loneliness, and boredom. Tying the animals without relief encourages the dogs to be defensive of their small territory.

The ordinances also promote safeguards for people, particularly children, who may wander into the dog’s area and encounter a dog poised to defend his small space.   CDC reports that a tethered dog is 3 times more likely to bite.  Children under 12 are 5 times more likely to be bitten by a dog.

Animal cruelty is powerfully connected to interpersonal violence and some, untreated, mental illness.  The animal abuse and extreme neglect can be a red flag that others in the area (children, elders, partners) are also in danger. 

Contributing to Quality of Life 

Tethered dogs are often the source of community nuisance.  They bark, howl, and whine continuously in their neighborhoods.  Needless tension and ongoing conflicts arise among neighbors over those annoying cries at all hours.

Yards and city lots with scruffy dogs tied to a stake, that often use old, worn out cars or rusted barrels as their shelter, are unsightly. They add to urban blight.

Encouraging Humane Treatment of Animals 

Dogs suffer physically and psychologically.  Endlessly tethering a dog out back, with no social interaction, with no relief from habitual pacing in a small area, with no protection from extreme weather – is unconscionable. 

Dogs on tethers can be injured or killed.  They get tangled around a tree, a pole, or a bush.  They can hang themselves on a fence. Their collars can become too tight or embedded in their necks. 

Our laws should reflect our community values.  Cincinnati, where I live, is a place where people care about their next-door neighbors – human and canine – and their fifty-two neighborhoods.  They want to live in healthy, vibrant, and top-notch communities, where families and their animals are safe, respected, and well-treated.

I strongly urge you to call your city council or township trustees TODAY to get a tethering ordinance passed where you live.

Need help?  PM me, Beth Sheehan, or J.D. Cooke on FB. 

Check out Jason’s FB page, Unchain Ohio, at the link.


Let’s unchain outside dogs!

Ohio Lags Behind Michigan in Tracking & Reporting Animal Disease

Ohio dog and cat lovers, take a close look at the difference in how Michigan, Ohio, Indiana, Kentucky, Pennsylvania, and Massachusetts protect our animals – and also human, public health and safety – in the way disease is reported and tracked in each state.

The Michigan State Veterinarian, Dr. James Averill, recently added both types of canine influenza to the 2015 Reportable Disease list.  This means all Michigan veterinarians and diagnostic labs MUST notify the state department if they suspect or have a positive test of canine flu.  Dr. Averill is concerned about the spread of the canine flu in Michigan, even though there are only three cases reported so far.  Because “canine influenza poses a serious health risk to dogs, especially in animal shelter settings. (Dr. Averill is) particularly concerned about shelter dogs.”

Ohio, on the other hand, does not have canine flu on its  Reportable Disease List.  I am linking both Michigan’s, Ohio’s, and several other states’ Reportable Disease Lists for you.  Ohio has just 37 reportable  diseases.  These relate primarily to livestock.  One or two, according to the Ohio State Veterinarian’s office, relate also to companion animals. It is my opinion that the one or two diseases that relate to companion animals are on the list primarily because they are livestock diseases.

http://codes.ohio.gov/oac/901%3A1-21  (Read Ohio Animal Reportable Disease List)

http://www.michigan.gov/documents/mdard/2013_2014_MDARD_AID_Reportable_Animal_Diseases_426614_7.pdf  (Read Michigan Animal Reportable Disease List)

http://www.in.gov/boah/files/2015_Reportable_Disease_list.pdf (Read Indiana Reportable Animal Disease List)

http://www.kyagr.com/laws/documents/KY_Reportable_AnimalDiseases.pdf (Read Kentucky Reportable Disease List)

http://www.agriculture.state.pa.us/portal/server.pt/gateway/PTARGS_0_2_24476_10297_0_43/AgWebsite/Files/Publications/reportable%20diseases04-10pdf.pdf   (Read Pennsylvania Animal Reportable Disease List)

http://www.mass.gov/eea/agencies/agr/animal-health/reportable-disease/reportable-disease-listing-generic.html (Read Massachusetts Animal Reportable Disease List)

Ohio, work with us to see stronger protections in place for our cats and dogs.  I strongly encourage you to join our FB groups today.