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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I just thought that I would share this here. :)
I originally wrote it as a Sticky for another forum that I moderate for.



Proper Containment

Whether it's while you're home or while you're away, one of the most important aspects of responsible ownership is proper containment. Lately it seems as though more and more people think that it's "no big deal" if their dog gets loose or is let off-leash in public. When you decide to get a dog you are not only taking on the responsibility of that dogs' life and well-being, but the responsibility of how that dog effects the lives of others as well. A lose dog is likely to get itself into trouble and can also cause trouble for others. A dog at large can destroy others' property, harm or be harmed by people and/or other animals, cause car accidents and so much more. For example, it is estimated that roughly 100,000 cats and dogs are hit (injured or killed) by cars each year in the United States alone. This is just one of the thousands upon thousands of various reasons why owners need to keep their dogs contained.

Besides the fact that a loose dog is at the very least an inconvenience to those in the neighborhood, a loose dog is also at risk of countless different things. Everyday, dogs cause or fall victim to a number of tragic events that could have been easily prevented with proper containment. Similar to needs of proper nutrition, exercise and shelter - our canine companions need to be kept safe and secure in todays' world.

I would say that on average I see at least one person a day carelessly walking their dog in public without a leash. That's one person too many. Over the years I've noticed scores of dogs that get loose regularly, with little to no precautions taken by their owners to prevent it. In my opinion, this is a form of neglect and should be recognized as such. There are a number of ways to ensure that your dog is properly contained, some of which will fit one persons' lifestyle better than another.

The Fenced Yard
By far the most commonly used method of containment among the general public, every yard differs in terms of security. In my opinion, a yard can be a rather inconvenient means of containing your dog (while away) because it can be very difficult to be positive of it's security. The fence should be sturdy and at least 6-8 feet tall, though many recommend it be higher. If you've got an athletic dog that is good at jumping or climbing, a strong arch that points inward at the top of the fence can be installed to keep the dog from getting over. The fence should be securely flush with the ground, for extra security it is recommended to cement the parameter along the fence. Because it can be both difficult and costly to secure properly, a yard is often most suited for use while the owner is home to supervise. However, if secured right, a yard can be very beneficial to both the owner and dog.

The Outdoor Run (aka Kennel)
Generally the same rules that apply to the yard apply to the outdoor run, though because they are usually smaller it takes less effort and materials to ensure it's security. Most start out by creating a cement pad or square parameter, posts for the enclosure are usually sunken into this foundation. Afterward the walls are put up, recommended to be about 6-8 feet high and of a sturdy material. To be positive of the runs' security many enclose or indent the top of the run as well. Just as with a yard, when constructed properly, with the right materials, this is a very effective and safe way of containing ones' dog.

The Crate (aka kennel/taxi)
The crate has become increasingly popular among dog owners, many find that it meets their needs of securing their dog indoors. Crates are most often used while owners are away, though also used in "Crate and Rotate" situations as well as a number of other scenarios. When deciding on a crate to purchase, go on the design and material that is used. Make sure that it is completely safe and secure, as well as big enough for your dog to be comfortable in.

The Tie-Out
There are a few different ways to set up a safe and secure tie-out. One set up involves a stake or axle (from a vehicle) buried or cemented into the ground. A chain is attached with a strong ring and swivel, on the other end is another swivel and (usually) a secure locking clasp to clip onto the dogs' collar. The second most common way to set up a safe and secure tie-out is using a zip-line, meant to give the dog more room. This set up starts with a tight cable that is secured about 6-8 feet above the ground, for example from one tree to another or from fence post to fence post. A chain is secured with a strong metal loop (as with the first set-up) that the cable is run through before being put up. The collar used for a tie-out should be strong, secure and weather proof. It must be tight enough that the dog can not manage to pull or wiggle its' head through, but loose enough that one cam fit at least two fingers between the collar and neck comfortably. When setting up a tie-out it is extremely important to make sure that there is nothing your dog could get tangled around or stuck on, as this can result in serious injury or death. The area in which the chain-spot is in should be fenced to keep other people and animals out. For more information on setting up a tie-out feel free to send me a Private Message.


SAFETY FIRST!

Be sure to do regular checking on your set ups to be positive that they are safe and secure.

Look thoroughly for any weather-wear or other kinds of damage.

One of the best ways test out a new set up (to be 100% sure of it's security) is to use it for a substantial period while supervising your dog. That way, your dog will help find any potential flaws your set up may have.


Because this "article" was written mainly to the containment of Pit Bull type dogs, extreme athleticism and determination should be taken into account when choosing a method of containment. However, it should be clear that proper containment is essential regardless of breed.

Keep in mind that all methods of containment described above must be utilized properly to be effective, safe and humane.
They are tools and a tool is only as good as the person using it.
 

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^^ That is good stuff!
 

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Note: Check your local laws regarding tying your dog out. I have heard here in AZ, it's illegal to tie your dog out without certain amenities (ie: shade, water, etc) due to the excessive heat.
 

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Ditto Tonka- its illegal in some cities here in TX to tie-out for more than 30 minutes, and in some cities tie-out is completely illegal.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Yes, I figured legality would be a given. I suppose I should have mentioned it though.

Tonka, I agree with those laws!
I also figured it was a given that if you live in AZ, your dog should have shade and water when left outside. :lmao:
 

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You'd be surprised what passes for common sense and what doesn't around here...
 

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You bring up some great points! I always have mine on a lead when not at home and I do not care for it when others dont. I have chihuahuas so they are small and a large uncontrolled dog could seriously hurt them. I've never had a problem but it does concern me when I'm out.

Some people assume their dogs wont do anything wrong or get hurt but unless you have your dog on a lead you really have no control over your own pet and animals, like children, can be unpredictable.

I keep mine on a lead for their own protection as well as others. My boy is not a biter but he is nervous and I do believe the potential of a fear bite is there. I keep him under control and ask others not to pet or touch him. He has a right to personal space and a lead gives me the tool to maintain that for him. He really enjoys being out and about and doesnt bark at others but needs to be left alone by strangers.
 

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Excellent post! I think it should be a sticky here too...
 

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Excellent. :)

The tether law here is 3 hours max. Not that its inforced...I think tethering is more of an east coast thing...here in CA everyone, I mean everyone has fencing, so Its rare to see tethered dogs here



Dog | Forum | Rocks!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks everyone. :)

It may be, Criosphynx. I know a lot of people here (North Western Canada) tether their dogs. I know that many of the members on the forum that I moderate for live on West Coast and tether their dogs, but the majority of those people have multiple dog households. A lot of them have 10+ dogs! :eek: I could never handle that!

The majority of owners I know (online or in person) who tether do so within a fenced yard, including myself.



Haha, Tonka, so I've heard!
 
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