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Tethered Dogs

One of the greatest areas of concern to Lee County Domestic Animal Services involves dogs that are improperly tethered in their yard and left unattended by their owners for the majority of time.  Lee County case files show that life led by tethered dogs is often characterized by neglect and even death.  Click here to view case file photos.

Why is chaining or tethering dogs not recommended?
• Dogs are pack animals and their human family is their pack.  Being deprived of this companionship causes dogs to suffer mentally and physically.
• Dogs tethered for long periods can become highly aggressive.  They naturally feel very protective of their territory since they cannot escape.  The Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association reports that 17% of dogs involved in fatal attacks on humans were restrained on their owners’ property at the time of the attack.  Tragically, children are often the victims.
• Tethered dogs often become victims of neglect and abuse.  Being out of sight and out of mind leads to a lack of basic care.  These forgotten dogs frequently suffer from starvation, lack of preventive medical care, inadequate shelter, improper tethering that causes injury or death, and exposure to heat and other extreme elements.  Having no means of escape, they also can be targets of teasing or torture.

We hope you will think twice before tethering or chaining your dog outside.  A great resource for information on anti-tethering solutions is the organization Dogs Deserve Better,   

To report animal abuse in Lee County call (239) 533-7387 ext. 2.  Be sure to have as much information as possible including a description of the animal and its condition, the location with an exact address if possible, the date and time, and any witnesses.