After vetoing a similar bill twice before in the past two years, our dog-loving Governor Greg Abbott just signed a bill that will make it against the law to tether a dog in the Lone Star State, kind of. Governor Abbott says "the previous bills were too vague and Texas is no place for "micro-managing laws" and Texas is no place for over-criminalization when it comes to our animals."

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Mixed Breed Medium Size Three Legged Dog Standing At Grass
Ryhor Bruyeu

While it will not be an outright crime to tether (tie-down) a dog, what will make it a punishable crime are the materials that are used to tie an animal down. This new bill digs deeper into "how the dog is restrained." The actual restrictions in the law ban chains or heavyweights used as restraints of any kind. Now dog collars must be made out of materials specifically designed to be placed around a dog's neck.

Furthermore, it also depends on the circumstances, as to adequate housing to protect the dog. The new bill spells it out: "The canine must have shelter from rain, hail, sleet, snow, high winds, extremely low temperatures, or extremely high temperatures."

This new bill did have some opposition, and those opposed said they were concerned that the law would make it harder to keep guard dogs restrained or to protect farm or ranch animals.

Zoonar RF
Zoonar RF

Finally, Paul Washburn with Rescue the Animals right here in Abilene, told me that he was glad that Governor Abbott signed this bill into law and that it was long overdue. Furthermore, he said the bill passed with a majority of legislative supporters.

RANKED: Here Are the 63 Smartest Dog Breeds

Does your loyal pup's breed make the list? Read on to see if you'll be bragging to the neighbors about your dog's intellectual prowess the next time you take your fur baby out for a walk. Don't worry: Even if your dog's breed doesn't land on the list, that doesn't mean he's not a good boy--some traits simply can't be measured.

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