Animal Restraint & Tethering Animals Ordinance
The mission of the Animal Services department is to promote the health, safety and welfare of animals in Denton. The new tethering ordinance, effective Nov. 11, 2020, is designed to protect unattended animals by restricting the use of tethers, chain or similar apparatuses unless a person in care, custody or control remains with the animal during the time of restraint. Click here to read the ordinance.
What is Tethering?
The terms “chaining” and “tethering” refer to the practice of fastening a dog to a stationary object and leaving them unattended. The term “chaining” tends to refer to situations where thick, heavy chains are used. “Tethering” is more often referred to partial restraint on a rope, lighter chain or pulley, which is the more prevalent form of tethering.
Examples of Tethering:
we recommend not tethering your pet
Tethering is not recommended because dogs are naturally social beings who need interaction with humans and/or other animals. Intensive confinement or long-term restraint can severely damage their physical well-being.
Risks and Drawbacks of Tethering Include:
- The dog's neck can become raw or sore and their collars can painfully grow into their skin.
- Dogs may be vulnerable to insect bites and parasites.
- There is a high risk of entanglement, strangulation, and harassment or attacks by other dogs or people.
- Dogs have the potential to become aggressive when approached by a stranger due to a flight or fight response.
Healthy Alternatives to Tethering
Click here for a map of dog-friendly buildings around Denton where you can take your dog inside to avoid tethering.
- Bring your dog inside – We believe that dogs are part of your family. We recommend that all dogs live indoors, receive regular exercise and are provided with adequate attention, food, water and veterinary care.
- Accompany your pet while they are tethered - If there is not an option for a secure enclosure in your yard and you must tether your pet, please stay with them throughout the duration of tethering.
- Spay/Neuter - A neutered male dog is less likely to try to escape a fence or “mark” in the home. A spayed female dog will not go into heat, so she will not roam around looking for a mate. Also, spaying reduces unwanted litters of puppies, helping to decrease the number of strays in our community.
- Install a fence – A secure fence, at the appropriate height, gives your dog unlimited freedom and makes house training easier, with quick access to outdoors. Click here to learn how to build a t-post fence
- Install a dog run – A dog run is an affordable alternative to building a fence and still allows your pet the opportunity to stretch their legs.
- Coyote Rollers – A coyote roller is a 4-foot, aluminum extruded ribbed roller designed to prevent animals from getting the foothold they need to climb over a fence. It is simple, safe, humane, requires no power source, and it’s maintenance free!
- Jump Restraint Harness – Dog jumping harnesses fit over the dog's body and by restricting the movement of its rear legs, make it virtually impossible for the dog to jump up on people, fences, counter tops, etc.
What to do if you see a dog tethered
Call the City of Denton Animal Shelter at (940) 349-7594