Jersey Pet Owners Shouldn’t Be Forced To Build A Fence Because It Doesn’t Address The Real Problem
Well....I have to say that I am so not on board with this.
According to NJ 101.5, there is a new "Responsible Dog Ownership Act," that is being considered that I just don't agree with.
Here are the rules this new act would enforce:
1. Owners of large dogs in New Jersey would be forced to put a fence around their property.
2. Disobeyers would be met with, "strong fines to punish those who don't follow these rules."
3. Pet owners who, "knowingly, purposely or recklessly allows a dog to roam without a leash or other restraint in a residential neighborhood, park or open space where a child may be present could face a criminal charge of endangerment."
It's not official just yet but there are parts of this new legislature that are just downright ABSURD.
This is not solving the problem here.
The reason this law is being considered is because a 3-year-old boy was killed from a dog attack up in Carteret....absolutely tragic.
But how on earth is forcing all of New Jersey to put fences around their yards going to address the fact that issues like these arise because of irresponsible dog owners???
You have people who don't watch their dog and/or let their dog roam free and these are the people you have to look out for...not someone's fence.
Having solid consequences for this crowd is definitely a start but this fence rule is a band aid.
A dog's actions -- or any animal for that matter -- is a true reflection upon the owner: how they discipline the dog, how they raise the dog and how they treat the dog in general.
So if an owner is neglectful or abusive, a fence is not doing to fix the fact that a dog raised in this environment will be aggressive as a response.
To solve the issue, you have to go to the source...and that, ladies and gentlemen, is usually the owner.
But let me just say that I am not saying you are at fault if your dog has any triggers whatsoever.
There are dogs who are not meant to be around other dogs or other people and that is just a fact.
I know plenty of dogs like this but guess what? There are owners who know this and won't put their dogs in a risky situation.
For example, my dog Carolina -- who likely had to fight other dogs for food to survive -- was rescued in Texas during Hurricane Harvey.
To this day, she is still food aggressive around other dogs.
It is my responsibility to know this trigger and to not ever put her in a situation where this trigger will be tested.
This new law would state that only owners of large dogs would need to put up fences.
The same neglect and aggression can come from small dogs and their size doesn't necessarily make them any less dangerous.
But once again....the responsibility falls on the owner no matter the dog's size.
Are you really going to force people to put up a fence and then pay for it out of their own pockets? Fences cost thousands of dollars!
On that point...if people don't have the money to build a fence, the only other option is to give up their dog. There are already thousand of dogs who don't have forever homes....this could make things 100X harder.
I do like the fact that those who are neglectful of their dog will be given solid consequences. It's a start....
But maybe the real solution is to pass stricter rules regarding animal care.
As of now, law enforcement can only intervene if the animal abuse is extreme and evident. For example: if an animal doesn't have access to food and water or if they are left outside in the freezing cold for an extended period of time.
But you and I both know that there are many ways for an animal to be neglected or abused....and THAT is what I think the main cause usually is when an animal becomes that aggressive.
They think this is the only way to protect themselves.
I know...I just said a lot.
But let me know your thoughts because if there are points or even a solution I am not thinking of, I would love to hear it: Nicole.Murray@townsquaremedia.com.
Stay safe out there and give your pet an extra hug tonight.
Thanks to NJ 101.5 for the info on this.