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Hundreds sign petition against tethering (Photo: Kimberly Sherwood)

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — For the second time this year, animal rights advocates are hoping to make a difference in Brunswick County.

Sunday they collected more signatures to add to their petition designed to ban tethering, tying up an animal with a short rope or chain.

It is an issue people across Brunswick County say they have been dealing with for a while now.

“A lot of animals that are chained with chains so heavy I couldn’t move them myself. There’s no need for it,” against tethering, Madge Mattel said.

So for the second time, advocates for animal rights are gathering signatures to present to the Brunswick County Commissioners in hopes of getting tethering banned or at least regulated.

“Get people involved, to get people aware of the tethering in Brunswick County and the fact that there are a lot of people that want it regulated,” advocates for animal rights president Kimberly Sherwood said.

In March the group went before the board of commissioners and were turned down.

“I know myself I’m standing here for a few minutes and I’m hot,” Mattel said. “Imagine not being able to get to shelter and being exposed to flees. Right now I have a fire ant biting me. Imagine being out there nonstop not being able to get away from this.”

They are hoping to have better luck this time. Veterinarian Kristen Colleren is joining the fight to ban tethering.

“We’re talking about people who are tethering for long periods of time on short tethers to the point where collars become imbedded,” Colleren said.

Collars growing into dog’s skin, it is a sad situation Dr. Colleren has seen firsthand.

“She was brought to us by a good samaritan. I had to surgically remove the collar, it left a huge gaping wound that exposed her trachea and esophagus. It took weeks and weeks for this wound to heal,” Colleren said.

That is why she along with others are heading to the Brunswick County Commissioners meeting August 21st.

“To see that this is something that is not acceptable. That is abusive,” Colleren said. “And we really should ban it not only county wide but statewide.”

Saturday’s event raised $1,000 plus gathered more than 100 signatures to add to the 4,000 the group already has. Included in today’s signatures, Leland Mayor Brenda Bozeman.

According to PETA, or People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, out of 100 counties across the North Carolina 13 prohibit tethering. Some of those include New Hanover County, Guilford County and Chapel Hill.

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  • guest45

    Bryan Leonard this is one time I say you are wrong, no one owning a dog should be allowed to chain or rope the animal, and should spend time behind bars for doing so.

    Any dog owner responsible enough for a pet should be responsible enough for a $100 of fence and adequate shade and housing for the dog, if not you do not need the dog! A dog should have a very minimum of 400 square feet of running space.

    Normally I am against government interference in our lives but in the case of dogs that can not defend themselves I am more than willing to step up to the plate for them! I would report and correct my own family for animal abuse!

    • Bryan Leonard

      Animal abuse is one thing and there are already laws against that (nobody is for the little poodle attached to a 1/2 inch logging chain). But a $100 in fence is not going to give you much fence at all, even if you buy a 10X10 kennel for $100 (which usually cost at least 200 dollars new) off of somebody off Craigslist, that’s still only 100 sq ft. even if the dog is still in the same shady area like my dogs have except mine have over 700 sq ft with a 15 ft chain (Area = Pi X Radius^2). of area to move. Which is almost double of what your “requirement” should be for a dog based on your standards. Many people cannot not afford giant kennels as kennels are not cheap. Also, many residents are renters and have pet dogs that they are not allowed to keep inside do to rules so they have to keep them outside. I have hunting hounds that I take extremely well care of, as they always have food, water, shelter, shots, deworming, and shade and i spend a lot of time with them almost daily, and they get let off frequently to be used in the field. I can’t keep some of my dogs in a fence as they are smart and will dig out, and I have a couple that know how to climb out of a 6 foot kennel. What is going to happen, especially in this county, is that you are going to force owners with dogs like mine as well as other owners that I know that use 15ft chains especially made for dogs so that they are not heavy, from having over 700 sq ft of room to move around at an extremely low cost, down to an area of less that 200 sq ft. because kennels are expensive and the only way to do it right is to have concrete (which that has negative effects on a dog physically) and I don’t have the funds to pour that much concrete to keep them from digging out.

      • guest45

        Bryan there again you are misunderstanding me , I think 400 sq ft should be a minimum, I am no rocket scientist but I believe that would be a 20′ by 20′ area. I believe a 15′ chain letting the dog go a total of 30′ side to side and
        out to 15′ wouldn’t really give the dog but a little over 400 square
        feet.

        We had bird dogs and beagles all our lives, some were diggers, some were climbers, we used chicken wire and when we built our lot’s we turned a foot of the fence inward in a trench so that when the dog would start digging he would hit the wire and they quit digging, also leaning the top foot in so he the birddogs wouldn’t go over it or stick their feet thru it, so give that a try for your hunting dogs

        Let’s get these dog’s off the chains and do the humane thing, if you can’t afford a decent fence you will never be able to afford the food and vet care. A little fence, a little shade, and a decent house to get out of the weather is a bare minimum for a pet.

      • Bryan Leonard

        Here is the math, it’s basic geometry. 15 ft chain is a 15 radius of a circle (Area of a circle = 3.14 X Radius^(squared)). 3.14 X (15 X 15) = 706 sq ft. I have 6 dogs so that would be thousands of dollars just in fencing materials. I pay for their food and i provide all the shots and deworming and medical care they need so I don’t need a vet unless it’s a major health issue. And mine have great shelter, shade and plenty of fresh food and water. What we don’t need is more unnecessary laws that hurt the many because of the actions of a few, instead just force stricter punishment for those that aren’t providing adequate food and water under current laws. Truth is, if someone doesn’t give a crap about their dog now, their not regardless of what the laws are.

      • Dot

        You don’t hunt to survive. You hunt because you think it is sporting. Most dogs depend on humans to cover their needs and for their survival, because they are considered pets (I include hunting dogs). We wouldn’t need laws if most humans either did a better job taking of their living, breathing, charges, who deserve more than even a 15 ft “lightweight” chain to live out most of their lives, except when they are being thrown in the back of a truck for someone else’s sport, and, many times, released to fend for themselves in the wild when they no longer serve their sporting master very well. Just check with the local shelters.
        Animal enforcement agencies are underfunded and cannot keep up with all of the people who keep dogs- I will not call them owners because they do not function as such- without even the basic necessities met. This is the South. It is hot. Do YOU want to live outdoors 24/7, even with “shelter”? I thought not.

      • Bryan Leonard

        Dot, I’m lucky that i was born in this age to have A/C but many just one generation before me didn’t even have A/C growing up so I don’t see your point. So you’re ok with a dog living in a Kennel in the same Climate? But again, it’s all about how you “feel” on emotion. Just because you don’t like something that I and my dogs enjoy doing and were bred to do for thousands of years you think it should be illegal just because you don’t like it (I know what you are and I’m not going to get into the using dogs to hunt debate today). I know there are people that don’t treat dogs the way they should, which is why I said to increase the punishment for neglected or poorly cared for dogs, but you’re just going to effect those who take care of their dogs more than anything. Like I stated before. Your new “Law” wouldn’t change how someone cares for a dog now. If they care about it now then they would already be feeding, watering, and sheltering it like they should.

      • guest45

        thanks for the math lesson, I do believe you take good care of your dogs, wish everybody did.

  • Bryan Leonard

    The current laws that exist are completely humane. Their petition is misleading as the image used for their petition with the dog and heavy chain with no food or shelter are already illegal in Brunswick county under the current ordinances and the owner would be fined and forced to fix the conditions or have the dog removed. Truth is, my hunting dogs on a 15 ft lightweight chain made specifically for dogs get 706 sq ft of area to move around, where most dogs that are in kennels only get 100 sq ft on average (but you don’t hear any complaints from them about kennels). I’m sure some of the supporters of their petition that say my 15ft chain is inhumane, lock their dog in a 2ft by 3ft kennel for 8 to 10 hours a day in the corner of a room while they go to work. The current laws that exist are enforced well and are already humane.

    • Claire

      You are misinformed.
      The current ordinance is inadequate.
      Your comment regarding the people involved keeping their dogs in a small kennel for hours per day is your own conjecture.

      • Bryan Leonard

        Please enlighten me how I am misinformed after I just provided facts. You just feel like it’s “inadequate” based on your emotion and not facts.

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