Joey Kennedy: Senate to consider dog chaining bill this week, but don’t hold your breath


Animal issues don’t get much attention from the Alabama Legislature. There are wonderful legislators who believe in and sponsor good legislation, but the legislative leadership just doesn’t put much effort behind those bills.

Whether it’s protecting nonprofit spay/neuter clinics or regulating puppy mills, our lawmakers turn their heads and close their eyes. Shame on them.

This week, a Senate committee will consider SB 468, also known as the Alabama Dog Tethering and Outdoor Shelter Act. Alabama Today has a good overview of this bill and its chances of passing.

Just like Apryl Marie Fogel at Alabama Today, we’re animal protection advocates at Animal Advocates of Alabama. We’re not nuts who believe animals should have the right to vote or that hunting for food is evil or that everybody has to be a vegan. But, like Alabama Today, we believe in the humane treatment of all animals. Chaining or tethering a dog in a desolate backyard, with little food, water or shelter, is inhumane.

The Alabama Dog Tethering and Outdoor Shelter Act will put some reasonable regulations on how dogs are kept outdoors.

We’ve seen dogs chained in backyards that are flooding in a heavy rain. We’ve had people tell us about dogs frozen to fences in the winter because they could not escape their chains. We know of cases where dogs chained outside in an Alabama summer have died of heat stroke.

That unregulated chaining is allowed in today’s Alabama is indefensible. It’s wrong and it’s cruel.

So, as Alabama Voters for Responsible Animal Legislation suggests, get in touch with your senator and tell him or her to support SB 468. Lawmakers have done precious little to help animals this legislative session. SB 468 is one of the last chances to do something positive for chained dogs this session.

For more information on this topic, see Alabama Chained Dogs on Facebook.

This column was republished with permission from Animal Advocates of Alabama, a site created by Joey and his wife Veronica to increase awareness for animal based issues throughout the state. Please visit to learn more.