The Yard Dog Problem and the Solution

The problem is six-fold

1. Animal Cruelty

It is cruel and inhumane to isolate social creatures. Dogs are allowed to be treated worse than livestock. Their suffering is profound and documented.

2. Public Safety

All data confirms that unsocialized dogs are a grave danger to the public, especially to children.

3. Public Nuisance

The dogs frequently bark, howl, cry, whine, escape, and menace, creating neighbourhood fear and anger. Noise complaints often results in further cruelty to the dog in the form of punishment, muzzling and poisoning.

4. Public Expense

Complaints and impoundment and disposal cost money, and these costs continue to rise as more dogs are owned.

5. Public Health

The areas the dogs are kept in are frequently contaminated with feces and urine and the food is a rodent attractant.

6. Lawlessness

When neighbours cannot get any action from city hall or the SPCA, they are forced to break the law by removing and rehoming the dog. A broad spectrum of people have been forced to do this, from off-duty police officers, crown prosecutors, grandmothers, single mothers on welfare, wealthy socialites, ministers, community activists, and untold numbers of ordinary people who would not otherwise dream of committing a felony. They are forced by the lack of action from political leaders and the SPCA to become lawless.

The solution is simple and easily enforced

It is a ban on the keeping of dogs outside the family home for more than one hour at a time during the day and no more than twice during a day, and not at all at night, and not unattended. We suggest that day be taken to mean from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. "Unattended" means when no one is in the residence to respond to a noise or other complaint. Those who intend to keep a dog outside will be discouraged by this restriction and will tend not to get a dog.

Education ought to attend legislation, but is not a substitute for legislation. It took legislation to ban public smoking and to ensure seat belt wearing. Education can take several generations to work, and suffering dogs cannot be left to suffer.

No tethering laws mean well, but result in dogs being kept in pens, in sheds, in garages, on decks, on porches and under porches, instead.

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