Pennsylvania Law Makes Leaving Pets Out in Cold Illegal

Posted by Mateja Lane
Beautiful brown dog chained outside in the yard

Animals can't be outside when the temperatures are extreme. 

Pennsylvania passed a law, called Libre's Law, making it illegal for pets to be tied up outside if it's too cold or too hot. The law was named after Libre, a puppy from a Lancaster County farm who was rescued last summer, sparking the conversation around animal rights in Pennsylvania. 

Signed by Gov. Tom Wolf at the state capital this summer, the law says that dogs cannot be outside for more than 30 minutes when temperatures drop below 32 degrees or are higher than 90 degrees.

"I am beyond thrilled," Jennifer Nields, cruelty officer for the Lancaster County Animal Coalition, said Wednesday.

Libre's Law increases fines and violators can serve jail time from 6 to 12 months. If the case is deemed as animal abuse or neglect, it is treated as a felony and could result in jail time up to seven years and a $15,000 fine. There have been correlation with animal abusers and domestic violence, according to Kristen Tullo, director of the Humane Society in Pennsylvania.

She stressed that "current laws do not carry penalties with suitable punishments for abuse, cruelty and neglect committed against animals in our state."

There are exceptions to the new animal cruelty law if the dog is tethered outside for hunting or sport.

"Don't leave them outside," said Mercer County Humane Officer Paul Tobin. "The new law is pretty clear."

What do you think of this new law? Tell us in the comments.

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Pennsylvania Law Makes Leaving Pets Out in Cold Illegal