Improperly tying dogs to "running lines" could result in Animal - Honolulu, Hawaii news, sports & weather - KITV Channel 4

Improperly tying dogs to "running lines" could result in Animal Cruelty offense

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Tying a dog to a "runner" could soon be considered animal cruelty if done improperly. State lawmakers are drawing up new guidelines to determine what's wrong and what's right.

Representative Cindy Evans says the bill is aiming to change behavior.

"The message is animal abuse is really bad," said Evans.

Representative Evans measure continues to progress at the State Capitol. It would make "tethering a dog to a runner" a "cruelty to animals" offense under certain scenarios.
"Some people call it animal cruelty, some people call it animal abuse, I personally believe a lot of people dont understand if you don't chain or tether your dog appropriately with collars you're actually harming the animal," said Evans.

If passed, dog less than six months old would not be allowed to be tethered to runners without supervision. Dog Owners would also have to make sure dogs of any age can't get tangled and can get to their food and water.

"This bill is not about telling people they cant chain, this bill is about there's a right way and a wrong way," said Evans.

The bill also also calls for the use of tethers more than 10 feet long and proportionate to the size and weight of the dog. The measure also prohibits chokers or prong collars from being used on any dogs tied to runners. The Hawaiian Humane Society says it's familiar with seeing these types of situations.

"We get a lot of calls from folks who are upset that dogs are being confined by a tether or a chain so it is an issue in the community," said Stephanie Kendrick of the Hawaiian Humane Society.

The Hawaiian Humane Society supports the proposed rules but not the new penalties that come with it. The bill would lessen the offense for animal cruelty from a misdemeanor to a petty misdemeanor.

"In the past people wanted to be very punish them they've done wrong and I felt the penalties were way to harsh," said Evans.

Representative Evans explains, she wants "teachable moments" rather than stiff penalties for a dog owner's first offense. A repeat offense however would land violators in jail for no less than two days along with a penatly of up to $500. The bill passed from the House to the Senate this week.

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