Raised Bill No. 5355
February Session, 2018
LCO No. 1813
Referred to Committee on ENVIRONMENT
AN ACT ESTABLISHING STANDARDS FOR THE ADEQUACY OF DOG SHELTER DURING EXTREME WEATHER CONDITIONS.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:
Section 1. Section 22-350a of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2018):
(a) No person shall tether a dog to a stationary object or to a mobile device, including, but not limited to, a trolley or pulley by means of: (1) A tether that does not allow such dog to walk at least eight feet, excluding the length of such dog as measured from the tip of such dog's nose to the base of such dog's tail, in any one direction, (2) a tether that does not have swivels on both ends to prevent twisting and tangling, unless a person is in the presence of such dog, (3) a coat hanger, choke collar, prong-type collar, head halter or any other collar, halter or device that is not specifically designed or properly fitted for the restraint of such dog, (4) a tether that has weights attached or that contains metal chain links more than one-quarter of an inch thick, [or] (5) a tether that allows such dog to reach an object or hazard, including, but not limited to, a window sill, edge of a pool, fence, public road or highway, porch or terrace railing that poses a risk of injury or strangulation to such dog if such dog walks into or jumps over such object or hazard, unless a person is in the presence of such dog, or (6) a tether that does not permit the dog continuous access to water in a sanitary and liquid state whenever the dog is tethered for more than fifteen minutes. The provisions of subdivisions (1) and (2) of this subsection shall not be construed to apply to: (A) Any veterinary practice licensed pursuant to section 20-197 that tethers a dog in the course of such veterinary practice, (B) any exhibition, show, contest or other temporary event in which the skill, breeding or stamina of such dog is judged or examined, (C) any exhibition, class, training session or other temporary event in which such dog is used in a lawful manner to hunt a species of wildlife during the hunting season for such species of wildlife or in which such dog receives training in a lawful manner to hunt such species of wildlife, (D) the temporary tethering of a dog at any camping or recreation area as expressly authorized by the Commissioner of Energy and Environmental Protection, or (E) the temporary tethering of a dog at a grooming facility in the course of grooming such dog.
(b) No person shall: [tether] (1) Tether a dog outdoors to a stationary object or to a mobile device, including, but not limited to, a trolley or a pulley, [when] or (2) fail to provide a dog with continuous access to adequate shelter when the dog is located in an area subject to a weather advisory or warning [is] issued by local, state or federal authorities or when [outdoor] there are environmental conditions, including, but not limited to, [extreme] heat, cold, direct sunlight, wind, rain, snow or hail, that a person should reasonably know pose an adverse risk to the health or safety of such dog based on such dog's [breed] size, age, [or] physical condition, or the thickness of the dog's hair or fur unless tethering or lack of access to adequate shelter is for a duration of not longer than fifteen minutes.
(c) Nothing in this section shall be construed to affect any protection afforded to any dog pursuant to any other provision of the general statutes, regulations of the Connecticut state agencies, local ordinance or local regulation.
(d) Any person who confines or tethers a dog for an unreasonable period of time or in violation of the provisions of subsection (a) or (b) of this section shall be fined one hundred dollars for the first offense, two hundred dollars for a second offense, and not less than two hundred fifty dollars or more than five hundred dollars for a third or subsequent offense.
(e) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (b) of this section, adequate shelter need not be continuously provided to a dog when a person is in the presence of the dog and exposed to the same adverse environmental conditions as the dog at all times that the dog is exposed to such adverse environmental conditions.
(f) For purposes of this section, "adequate shelter" means any structure that meets the following standards and requirements:
(1) (A) It provides at all times (i) access to water in a sanitary and liquid state, (ii) access to natural or artificial light according to a regular cycle of day and night, (iii) space that enables the dog to readily turn around in a full circle and lie down on the dog's side with limbs outstretched, and (iv) when the dog is in a sitting position in such shelter, the ceiling of such shelter does not touch the top of the head of the dog;
(B) It is constructed and maintained in a manner to minimize the accumulation of any waste, debris, precipitation and other moisture, and mud inside, surrounding, above and underneath any such structure;
(C) It is soundly constructed to prevent the sagging or collapse of any part of the structure and is maintained in good repair with no exposed sharp points or edges that could injure a dog;
(D) It remains in an upright position at all times;
(E) In the event of adverse cold weather environmental conditions, it is an enclosed structure that has (i) a solid roof, solid walls with a single opening that is not larger than necessary to allow the dog to readily enter and exit the structure, and a floor that is raised off the ground, and (ii) insulation, dry bedding, and a windbreak at the entrance that are sufficient to keep the dog dry and maintain a normal body temperature; and
(F) In the event of adverse hot weather environmental conditions, including, but not limited to, direct sunlight or hot pavement, it provides the dog with adequate shade or other cooling, by natural or artificial means, to allow the dog to maintain a normal body temperature.
(2) "Adequate shelter" includes any part of the residence of an owner, or other person with custody or control, of a dog provided such part, and the use thereof, meet the requirements of subdivision (1) of this subsection.
(3) "Adequate shelter" does not include: (A) A crawl space under a building or a part of a building, including, but not limited to, any area under steps, a deck, or a stoop; (B) the space under a vehicle; (C) the inside of a vehicle if the dog is kept in the vehicle in a manner or for a length of time that a person should reasonably know poses an adverse risk to the health or safety of the dog; or (D) any structure (i) made from pressure-treated wood which contains the chemicals arsenic or chromium, (ii) with a floor that consists of wire or chain-link, that has openings through which a dog's paw can pass, that sags under a dog's weight, or that a person should reasonably know poses a risk of injury to a dog's paws, (iii) that is located outdoors and that is made from cardboard or other materials that are easily degraded by the elements, or (iv) that contains a supplemental heating mechanism that a person should reasonably know poses a risk of fire.
This act shall take effect as follows and shall amend the following sections:
October 1, 2018
Statement of Purpose:
To establish certain requirements for what constitutes adequate shelter for a dog during adverse weather conditions.
[Proposed deletions are enclosed in brackets. Proposed additions are indicated by underline, except that when the entire text of a bill or resolution or a section of a bill or resolution is new, it is not underlined.]