Several groups spoke in favor of Floyd County passing a tether ban during the public participation section of Tuesday’s County Commission meeting.
“We’re protesting the 24/7 tethering of dogs with no protection from the elements,” Rachel Meier said.
“They are unassisted, freezing to death, starving to death, dying of thirst and hanging themselves.”
Meier has been a member of the Floyd County Animal Alliance for five years. One of the many services the group does is look for animal neglect around the county and help provide food and welfare for chained animals.
The group isn’t asking for a total ban on tying up dogs outside, Meier said, but on “unassisted tethering.” That is when no one is present to look after the dog or the dog is chained without any food, water or protection from the elements.
Jessica Cagle, a resident of Rome, attended the meeting representing No More Puppies GA, an organization dedicated to the neutering and spaying of dogs in Clayton, Bartow and Floyd counties. Cagle talked about the physical harm that comes from chaining dogs, as well as how chaining affects the personality of dogs.
“A chained dog is 2.8 times more likely to attack someone. An unaltered male dog is even more likely to attack,” Cagle said.
Andrea Miller, a resident of Cobb County, represented Unchain Floyd County, an organization specifically dedicated to the tether ban. Miller began choking up as she went over the conditions she has found multiple dogs in as she went around the community. Miller also talked about the public safety concern regarding the chaining of these animals.
“They’re not very far. We’re two miles away from the worst one ... A dog could run two miles into downtown and bite someone,” Miller said.
Several other groups also weighed in, including Berry College students, an animal rights lawyer from Marietta and W-under Dogs, an Atlanta organization that works with shelter dogs and at-risk youth.
Commission Chair Scotty Hancock thanked the attendees for speaking on the topic and said that the board would be taking the tether ban into consideration.