Letter to the editor: A dog’s life
The colder it gets outside, the more I think about this. Every day, I pass the same houses on my way home, several of which have dogs chained or penned in their back yards. To a dog, this type of life is miserable.
Dogs are pack animals. Since they have been domesticated, humans have become their pack. When they are isolated from us, they suffer both mentally and physically. Keeping a dog on a chain for life is both cruel and inhumane.
A chained dog suffers physically most often due to collars that are too tight. They are more prone to all sorts of parasites and they are left out to endure extreme weather conditions. Mentally, chained dogs suffer because they want desperately to be with their pack.
Another thing that should be taken seriously is that chained dogs are 2.5 times more likely to bite than dogs that live inside with the family. This is because on a chain, the dogs become very territorial and less socialized.
Anyone who keeps their pet chained or penned should reconsider. If not, maybe they should find a home for the animal where it will have a fenced yard, or will be taken out on a leash and, most of all, be a part of the family.
Both the Humane Society of the United States and the U.S. Department of Agriculture believe that chaining or penning dogs is inhumane. Many communities across the U.S. have already banned the use of chaining or tethering, or at least regulate it.
Dogs are meant to be companions, not lawn ornaments.