New York Laws Dog Owners Need to be Aware of

There are many laws in the great state of New York that dog owners need to be aware of.

As a responsible dog owner living in New York, it's up to you to follow all of the laws surrounding dog ownership. But, unfortunately, many dog owners don't realize there are even dog ownership laws to follow in the first place! Luckily, your neighborhood animal hospital in Carroll Gardens is here to help. The professionals at The Vet Set have come up with this list of need-to-know laws in New York for dog owners:

#1. Your dog must be licensed.

Any time you are out in public with your dog, there must be a license displayed on their tag with an expiration sticker. Why is licensing important? Licensing can help to reunite lost dogs and their owners, and it helps with the containment of rabies and other diseases. A license for a dog that has been neutered or spayed is $8.50, and a license for a dog that has not been neutered or spayed is $34.

#2. Your dog must be kept on a leash no longer than six feet.

While most places have leash laws, in New York, leash laws are a bit more specific than most. Not only does your dog have to have a leash on at all times, but the leash can't be longer than six feet long. Both the Parks Department and the Department of Health and Sanitation can and do enforce the leash law, and you'll be subject to a hefty fine if you decide to ignore it. If your dog needs space to run free, there are designated areas where dogs with current rabies vaccines and licenses are permitted to be off of their leash. There are also a few different parks in the city that have off-leash hours.

#3. Your dog must get vaccinated for rabies.

Before your dog reaches four months old, they must have the rabies vaccination in order to stay in compliance with state law. It's also important to ensure that your dog gets all of the necessary boosters after they had had their initial rabies shot. In most cases, you'll need proof that your dog is up to date on their rabies vaccination for them to be professionally groomed and/or welcome in playgroups or at dog runs.

#4. Your dog cannot be tethered for more than three hours.

In New York City, it's illegal to leave your dog tethered up all day, even if they have access to food and water. The law, which was passed by the New York City Council in 2011, states that a dog cannot be tethered for more than three hours in a 12-hour period. The same law also indicates that dogs cannot be tethered using choke or pinch collars, or heavy chains. Why? According to the City Council, when a dog is tethered up inhumanely, it makes them more prone to be aggressive towards others. The tether law was designed to protect both humans and dogs.

#5. Pick up after your dog.

While canine waste laws are now commonplace throughout the United States, New York was one of the first major cities to enact one. According to the law, when you're out walking your dog, you must pick up their waste or be subject to a $250 fine.

Are there breed restrictions in New York?

In New York, the state law is about identifying, tracking and regulating dogs that have been deemed dangerous on an individual level, rather than solely on the breed of the dog. In fact, New York is one of a handful of states that prohibits breed-specific legislation. However, the New York City Housing Authority prohibits its residents from owning the following breeds:
  • Akita Inu
  • Alangu Mastiff
  • Alano Espanol
  • American Pit Bull Terrier
  • American Staffordshire Terrier
  • Argentine Dogo
  • Bedlington Terrier
  • Boston Terrier
  • Bull and Terrier
  • Bull Terrier
  • Bully Kutta
  • Cane Corso
  • Dogue de Bordeaux
  • Dogo Sardesco
  • English Mastiff
  • Fila Brasileiro
  • Gull Dong
  • Gull Terr
  • Irish Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  • Korean Jindo Dog
  • Lottatore Brindisino
  • Neapolitan Mastiff
  • Perro de Presa Canario
  • Perro de Presa Mallorquin
  • Shar Pei
  • Staffordshire Bull Terrier
  • Tosa Inu

Let us help you stay in compliance with New York dog laws.

Is your dog due to a rabies vaccine? Schedule your appointment with The Vet Set today! And, feel free to contact us if you have any questions or concerns.

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