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Dallas may loosen leash on 'off-leash' policy

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The Dallas City Council recently conducted a hearing that called into question the current definition of an animal "under control" on the street.

Animal Control officers have complained that if they go out to pick up a roaming dog and the owner calls it back, that dog owner has the right to claim they were not in violation of any laws.

As it stands right now, a pet is under control if it responds to voice commands. In regards to an animal on the owner's property, the law states that the animal must be "secured by a leash, chain, or lead of sufficient strength or fence to prevent it (the dog) from escaping."

If the animal is with its owner, the animal is considered under control even if it simply is "trained to respond to said voice, whistle or other control." Meaning, the dog can in fact be off a leash.

City Council members will re-convene on September 9th to see if the definition is fitting or if more secure measures should be put in place.

According to, "Council Member Chris Carter is the chairman of the city's public safety committee, which has been working on the animal policy for months."



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