Dogs should be inside

Published 8:54 pm Monday, January 28, 2019

To the editor:

Just over a year ago during the bomb cyclone, PETA fieldworkers, who were out helping dogs left chained in the deadly cold, met a young pit bull named Hazel.

Like countless dogs across the commonwealth, Hazel spends 24 hours a day tethered outdoors — out of sight and out of mind. Because she was underweight, PETA persuaded Hazel’s owners to let us treat her for parasites, and she spent a few blissful days indoors at our shelter, where she enjoyed warmth, a sofa, affection and walks.

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But, we had to take her back “home,” and today, as I write this, sweet Hazel remains tethered in the far corner of a backyard in Gloucester, longing for companionship.

While the rest of us have taken trips, seen friends, and spent time with our families, Hazel and many other dogs were at the mercy of the elements every single day and night — shivering in the frigid cold, baking in the blazing sun, being pelted with hail, and bitten bloody by flies and fleas.

But this legislative session offers these forgotten dogs a small measure of hope, with the introduction of Sen. Lionell Spruill’s SB 1025, which would prohibit tethering dogs outdoors during extreme weather, and require longer, lighter tethers for dogs who are kept tied up.

The bill just passed the Senate. Its next stop is the House Agriculture Subcommittee, where similar bills have died in past years because some members of that subcommittee do not see anything inherently inhumane about keeping a dog tethered 24/7.

We respectfully disagree. If you do too, please contact your delegate’s office today and urge them to vote “YES” on SB 1025. For continuously tethered dogs like Hazel, this bill could be the difference between life and death.

Please contact me at for more information.

Daphna Nachminovitch
Senior Vice President, Cruelty Investigations Department
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals