Dog owners are obliged by law to keep their dogs under control. This means keeping it securely on your property at all times, and on a leash in public to prevent traffic accidents, dog fights and nuisance to neighbours. Certain breeds of dogs must also be muzzled in public. Your dog should always have a collar on with your name and phone number on a disc or tag if it gets lost, and you should have a licence available at the Post Office. You should also ensure that your dog does not soil in public places, and if it does it is your responsibility to clean up after it.
Inserting a microchip under the skin of the neck area has become a common method of permanently identifying your dog so that if it gets lost you have a very good chance that he/she will be returned to you. Microchipping also reduces the cost of pet health insurance and allows you get a pet passport for your dog.
Dogs should NEVER be chained or tied by lengths of rope as this is a cruel practice. The range of movement is limited and it cannot exercise properly and may become cold or wet, especially if there is inadequate shelter. Lack of companionship and isolation leads to boredom and stress. Many dogs bark or howl constantly to express their frustration. Constant pulling on the chain may damage the skin of the neck and lead to internal neck injuries. Dogs may also get caught up in the chain injuring other parts of the body.
Do not chain or use a running-line for a dog with an injured limb or other body parts as the injured area may be re-injured by the chain.
Best Ways to Confine your Dog
The ideal way to confine a dog is in an enclosed garden or yard. If this is not possible, a run enclosed with a strong chain-link fence with a proper kennel is an alternative. The fence must be high enough and secure enough to ensure the dog cannot escape. If a proper enclosure cannot be provided, the best alternative is a Running Chain.
A Running Chain
This consists of a taut wire between posts, buildings, or trees. The dog’s collar is attached to the line by a short chain and swivel. The dog can run up and down the length of wire in an unrestricted manner and has access to a large area. Running chain kits are available, or the parts may be obtained from a hardware shop (see list below).
A suitable waterproof and windproof kennel should be within easy access for the dog. The kennel should be at least 4 inches of the ground and have a door on one side to allow for easy cleaning and an entrance hole just large enough for the dog to get in and out freely. A sack or canvas flap over the entrance will keep the dog dry and warm in bad weather. Make sure there is nothing on or about the kennel that can snag the chain.