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ASPCA Grants $22,500 to Help Santa Cruz County Replace Dangerous Tethered Chains

Funding enables Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter to help dog owners abide by California’s anti-tethering law
October 31, 2013

Santa Cruz, Calif.—The ASPCA® (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) today announced it has provided a $22,500 grant to Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter (SCCAS) to launch a new program aimed at removing tethered chains from the yards of willing pet owners in Santa Cruz County and replacing them with trolley systems—a more humane method for keeping dogs confined outside. The grant funding will allow SCCAS to install nearly 300 trolley systems, sometimes referred to as aerial dog runs, and provide 200 dog houses throughout Santa Cruz County.

Since 2006, it has been illegal in the state of California to keep dogs tethered on chains, as stated by California Health & Safety Code 122335. Despite the anti-tethering law, many pet owners continue to tether their dogs in Santa Cruz County. SCCAS recognized the need to intervene and offer the necessary materials and assistance for pet owners who may otherwise not have the funds to abide by the law.

“This grant will allow our agency to provide a more comfortable and legal option for dogs who live outdoors,” states Todd Stosuy, field services manager with the Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter. “While our agency promotes dogs living indoors, we understand that this is not feasible for all families.  We are ecstatic to be able to assist residents in our community by providing resources that will create a more positive living environment for their dogs.”

The initiative is part of SCCAS’ ‘Door-to-Door’ program, in which animal control officers visit pet owners in underprivileged communities to offer free services and resources for pets. As part of the program, as well as other outreach events, the SCCAS offers low cost spay and neuter, microchipping, vaccinations, dog houses, backyard dog enrichment activities, collars, identification tags, leashes and humane education.

“Tethering is an inhumane practice that poses a threat to the safety of the tethered dog, other animals and humans,” said Justine Dang, ASPCA Anti-Cruelty grants officer. “Many pet owners don’t want to keep their dogs on chains but may not be able to afford the materials for a trolley system or fence. The ASPCA is pleased to be able to help SCCAS reach disadvantaged pet owners and create a better quality of life for dogs in Santa Cruz.”

Pet owners in Santa Cruz who are interested in having a trolley system installed should contact SCCAS at 831-454-7254.