The Town of Huntington, New York, has scheduled a public hearing on proposed changes to the town’s animal laws. These include very broad definitions of when a dog would be considered “at large”, and outdoor tethering requirements that could actually harm dogs.
Those who reside in Huntington are encouraged to attend the hearing on Tuesday, July 12 and contact the town board to express any comments or concerns with this proposal (Scroll down for hearing and contact information).
Proposal 2016-310 contains several updates to the Town Code “to safeguard the health and welfare of town residents and their animals [and] to protect animals from abuse and neglect”, according to the proposal’s findings. While some basic provisions to ensure the safety of dogs that are kept outside are reasonable, there are several sections that need clarification to ensure that dogs and the rights of dog owners are protected:
- Broad, vague definition of “at large” that could punish responsible dog owners – Part of being a responsible dog owner is making sure your dog is not running loose in neighborhoods or public areas where dogs should be properly secured. It is appropriate to have basic “at large” dog laws to hold owners accountable in these situations.
However, in this proposal, a dog could be considered to be “at large” for numerous scenarios. This includes vague language that would seem to imply that the dog owner will be held responsible for any situation where a dog could potentially harm any animal or property. There is also a provision that states that dog owners would be charged with “at large” dog violations if any trespassers or any animal enters the owner’s private property without permission and are harmed if the owner didn’t have a sign warning people there is a dog in the yard. These provisions are too broad and confusing, and do not address the issue of dogs being “at large”.
- Outdoor tethering requirements that could harm dogs – The proposal contains a number of regulations to ensure that dogs tethered outside are kept in a humane manner. Many of the provisions are appropriate and protect the dog’s health and safety. The AKC is concerned, however, with a provision that requires that whenever a dog is tethered for more than 15 minutes, it must have continuous access to food and water. A dog’s basic needs should always be met, but continuous access could result in too much food and water and prove a danger to the dog.
Residents are encouraged to read the proposal to view all the changes and see how they would impact you. To view, click here and scroll to page 113.
What You Can Do:
Attend the public hearing and express any comments and concerns you have with this proposal:
Huntington Town Board Public Hearing
July 12, 2016
Town Hall, 100 Main Street, Huntington, NY
Contact the members of the Town Board with any comments or concerns:
Hon. Mark Cuthbertson
Hon. Susan A. Berland
Hon. Eugene Cook
Hon. Tracey A. Edwards
The Town of Huntington, New York, has scheduled a public hearing on proposed changes to the towns animal laws. These include very broad definitions of when a dog would be considered at large, and outdoor tethering requirements that could actually harm dogs.