Texas law aims to protect dogs from weather extremes

The Safe Outdoor Dogs Act was signed into law in October and went into effect on Jan. 18

AUSTIN, Texas - A new law in Texas aims to protect man’s best friend from extreme temperatures, inclement weather and standing water when they’re outside in the elements.

The ‘Safe Outdoor Dogs Act’ was signed into law by Gov. Greg Abbott last October and went into effect on Jan. 18.

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The new law requires dogs restrained outdoors to be provided with adequate shelter to protect them from the elements like extremely hot and cold temperatures, rain and other inclement weather, and standing water, according to the Texas Humane Legislative Network.

The shelter must be able to ensure the dog can stand, turn around and lie down.

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The law also requires dog owners to provide drinking water and prevents the use of chain restraints.

In addition, law enforcement can take immediate action to help a dog in distress rather than waiting for 24 hours as had been required previously.

The weather in Texas can be pretty extreme.

In Dallas, for example, average temperatures in January are around 56.5 degrees. The summer can be extremely hot. The average temperature in June is 91.5 degrees, 95.6 degrees in July and 95.8 degrees in August, according to the National Weather Service.

In the months between March and October, all the record high temperatures are above 100 degrees. January and February have seen record low temperatures below zero.