Letter to the Editor: Safe for Them, Safe for Us

From The Pittsburg Gazette, April 1, 2021

Last month's bitter winter weather sadly claimed the lives of hundreds of Texas Dogs. These dogs perished un­necessarily in the storm. As a volunteer for Texas Humane Legislation Network, we received many phone calls and pictures from across Texas of dogs freezing and dying. One picture imprinted on my mind is of one such dog in our own Camp County. The dog was chained outside without shelter. It's unfathomable to suffer freezing to death. Most importantly, from a human safety perspective, dogs living on the end of a chain are more aggressive and unpredictable. Children have been attacked and some fatally injured by their family dog who lived chained outside.

I want to tell you about an important way you can help make our community safer while helping Tex­as dogs in 2021. Help make our community Safe for Them, Safe for Us. I'm asking for your support of HB 873 & SB 474, The Safe Outdoor Dogs Bill, which will hopefully be voted on and passed during this current legislative session.

Among other things, this bill strikes the current mandatory 24-hour waiting period required by the current state statute. In effect, it will allow Ani­mal Control Officers and Law Enforcement to immediately remove a dog from a perilous situation. To me, that is HUGE!

The bill also defines shelter for dogs on restraints so that now Law Enforcement, Animal Control Officers, owners, and judges can now define shelter. Without this bill, shelter remains with no definition, and some judges rule that a broken, wet doghouse is "adequate shelter."

Because you are a citizen who cares about the wel­fare of our animals and the safety of our communities, your support of this bill would certainly be impactful to our local representatives. PLEASE call or email to­day and be the voice for those who have no voice. Ask our representatives for their UNWAVERING support of HB 873 and SB 474. Call now, Legislation is in session. Five minutes of your time could save lives.

Your Representative is Cole Hefner, reach him at [email protected] or 512-463-0271.

Your Senator is Bryan Hughes, reach him at [email protected] or 512-463-0101.

"I'm not telling you it is going to be easy; I'm telling you it's going to be worth it." -unknown

Rhonda Braudis, Legislative Ambassador, THLN


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