Pennsylvania's Dog Laws

NEW DOG LAW ADDITIONS!!!!!  Please contact our Police Department if you suspect violation(s) 

Gov. Tom Wolfe signed into law in late June 2017, limitations on the amount of time a dog can be tied up on a leash. An unattended dog cannot be tethered outside for more than nine hours in a 24-hour period. Also, a dog cannot be tethered unattended outside for longer than 30 minutes in temperatures above 90 degrees or below 32 degrees.

The new rules governing the tethering of unattended dogs also require that dog owners use a tether of a type commonly used for the size and breed of the dog that is at least three times the length of the dog as measured from the tip of its nose to the base of its tail or 10 feet, whichever is longer; that the tether is secured to a well-fitted collar or harness by means of a swivel anchor, latch or other mechanism designed to prevent the dog from becoming tangled; and that the dog has access to shade and water to drink.

The presence of excessive waste or excrement in the area where a dog is tethered, open sores or wounds on a dog’s body, or the use of a tow or log chain or a choke, pinch, prong or chain collar can also be considered neglect under the law.

Dogs can still be kept outside 24 hours a day if they are untethered and within a fenced pen or yard, as long as they have shelter, a clean living environment and nourishment. Dogs should be provided in winter weather with an airtight dog house off the ground several inches that has a flap on the door and hay, straw or cedar chips as bedding.

Those charged with neglect under the new rules face a summary offense punishable by up to 90 days in jail and/or a $300 fine; or a third-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in prison and/or a $2,000 fine if the neglect causes serious bodily injury or places the animal at imminent risk.