July 9, 2013
The Anderson City Council unanimously passed a tethering ordinance at their meeting held on July 8, reported Fox Carolina News on July 9.
Violators will have 30 days to make changes or face a $1,097 fine. Here are the new rules
1. The animal must be over the age of six months
2. The animal is in visual range of the responsible party.
3. The animal is not tethered more than two hours in any continuous 12-hour period.
4. The tether is connected to the animal with a buckle-type collar or a body harness made of nylon or leather not less than one inch in width and is one inch greater in diameter than the animal’s neck or torso.
5. The tether has the following properties:
a. A minimum 12-foot length
b. A swivel-type termination at both ends
c. Is not made of chain
d. Total weight does not exceed 10 percent of the animal’s body weight
e. Is fabricated of a material that prevents tangles.
Only a few areas in S.C. currently have a tethering ordinance. These are York and Beaufort counties, the city of Greenville and the town of Greer.
This ordinance has been a long time in the making. Back on March 22, the Anderson Independent ran a story where county council member Eddie Moore, who is chairman of the welfare committee stated
“We have a lot of animals being tethered in very inhumane ways. They are tied to trees; they are on short leashes. Some of the issues of having a tethering law might be with the farmers who leash dogs near cows to keep coyotes away. From a personal standpoint, I have used runs with cables and pulleys that give dogs plenty of room. … We want to have input so we can come up with something that works in Anderson County.”
Rhonda Sims, founder of Freedom Train Transport Rescue describes how some of the tethered animals in Anderson County have been found.
“We see collars where the skin has grown around the neck and has to be removed and if you can imagine the scars it leaves on their skin, imagine how scared they are inside from the life they’ve lived,”
Rhonda’s dog Penny was a tethering rescue who had been neglected by her previous owner.
Rhonda also believes those who will be in violation will welcome help to bring them within the ordinance.
Freedom Fences, a non-profit group that builds fences to get tethered dogs into a better environment, has about a two-month backlog of people needing their services.
Charlene Pedrolie, who is willing to donate $100,000 to Freedom Fences if the tethering ordinance passed. She told the Independent Mail that her money would go someplace else if Anderson County doesn’t approve an ordinance.
Some oppose the ordinance, believing instead that current animal cruelty laws need to be better enforced rather than new laws being made. Others simply don’t approve of the government interference and believe pet ownership shouldn’t be dictated by city officials.
The tethering ordinance will amend Section 18-49 of the current Anderson City Code regarding animal care.
Anyone needing the services of Freedom Fences can reach them by phone at 864-940-1788 or 864-634-0944, or by visiting their website.