Dog Tethering

As of July 1, 2015, leaving your dog on a rope, chain or tether is illegal.

Newport News Code Section 6-78. Unattended tethering of dogs prohibited; exceptions.

  1. It shall be unlawful to tether any unattended dog for a period exceeding one (1) continuous hour.
  2. When a dog is tethered, the tether must be attached to the dog by a properly applied collar, halter, or harness configured so as to protect the dog from injury and prevent the dog or the tether from becoming entangled with other objects or dogs, or from extending over and object or edge that could result in the strangulation or injury of the dog. Furthermore, the tether must be at least three (3) times the length of the dog, as measured from the tip of its nose to the base of its tail.
  3. Any owner, whose dog has a valid license pursuant to Section 6-33 as of February, 1 2015, shall be exempt from the provisions of this section as it relates to each dog owned and licensed prior to February 1, 2015. The exemption provided by this subsection shall be forever forfeit for any dog whose license is not renewed by February 1 of any subsequent year.
Healthy alternatives to tethering are:
  • Bring your dog inside. This is the ideal situation for your dog to become a part of the family.
  • Spay and Neuter. A neutered male 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 looking for a mate. Also, spaying reduces unwanted litters of puppies, helping to decrease the number of strays in our communities.
  • Install a fence. A secure fence, at the appropriate height, gives your dog limited freedom and makes house training easier, with quick access to the outdoors. Fencing can be cheap and easy to put up. We are glad to provide information on organizations that will help you build or improve fences and dog runs, in your yard.
Resource documents about tethering and tethering alternatives:

For further information contact Newport News Animal Services at 757-595-7387.

Dog Photo