That’s right—our city has a cat leash law.
I think it’s pretty funny how my neighbor’s cat sits outside our big window every morning, teasing my poor dog — who never fails to bark exhaustively at the sight — and nuzzling up to my leg as I head to my car, a little salt in the wound. It’s all in good fun.
But we received an interesting email from a reader today who takes exception to this sort of feline freedom.
She wants to remind Dallas residents that liberal cat roaming, while ostensibly socially acceptable, is illegal.
She is totally correct.
The Dallas ordinance regarding cat restraint goes as follows:
All animals, including cats, must be confined at all times. A code amendment states cats must be “restrained at all times in a fenced yard, in an enclosed pen or structure, or by a hand-held leash if in the custody of the owner.”
(There is a feral cat trap, neuter and return program whose participants are exempt.)
So, do with this information as you wish. I won’t be ratting out any of my neighborhood cats, but I can’t speak for everyone.
I can say that while our feline friends probably will evade Animal Control officers, they are less likely to escape coyotes — common to our city — who have an appetite for kitties.
If you are a stickler for rules and a cat owner, this How To on cat tethering might come in handy.