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The Dangers for Outdoor Dogs

Isn’t my dog happier living outside?

Only if you live outside with him! More than ten thousand years ago dogs were domesticated to live with humans: they long for our companionship and need it. Dogs that do not have constant human contact have more behavior problems.

The reason I put my dog outside is because he was destroying the house. I had no choice, what else could I do?

By putting your dog outside you will only increase his behavior problems. Dogs that live outdoors are more likely to bark, dig, chew, jump the fence and bite. The reason for this is because they become lonely, bored and anxious. Dogs need constant human contact and interaction. You can have a well-behaved dog that lives indoors. The Humane Society is here to help! Please call our Behavior Helpline at 954.266.6851 so we can help you and your furry friend.

My dog started to jump the fence, so I had no choice but to chain him to a tree. Do you have any other suggestions?

One of the cruelest things you could do to a dog is to chain them for a prolonged period of time. It is cruel and inhumane! Dogs kept on chains watch as the world goes by, and imagine what life would be like. Chained dogs suffer from psychological deprivation which results in listlessness, depression, frenzied barking and aggression. There is nothing positive about keeping any dog on a chain. If your dog is jumping the fence, he’s probably bored. Take him for lots of walks to alleviate his boredom and bring him inside with the family. Call the Behavior Helpline at 954.266.6851 so we can help you with this transition. BREAK THE CHAIN!

I wanted a barking dog to protect my property if intruders came by the house. How can he do that inside?

First of all, your dog will want to protect you and your home if he is bonded to you. If he is outside alone the bond probably isn’t very strong. Secondly, a barking dog is like a car alarm that goes off, nobody pays attention, because they hear it all the time. Besides, how can your dog fight off any intruders if he’s in the yard? If you want a dog to protect you the best way is to love him, keep him inside and he’ll want to watch over you and the family.

Is it too hot to keep my dog outside in Florida?

Dogs are more susceptible to heat than humans. Dogs have fur coats and do not perspire. They can only cool themselves by panting and sweating through their paw pads. A dog’s normal body temperature is 100.5 to 102.5 compared to our 98.6. If you’re hot, you can only imagine how hot your dog is! Short-nosed breeds like pugs and bulldogs are prone to heat stress. Arctic breeds like huskies and malamutes have thick double coats built for cold winters, not hot summers. Other breeds like Dalmatians and light color-coated dogs can get easily sunburned. Keep your dog cool by bringing him inside into the air conditioning. If you must keep him outdoors be sure he has plenty of cold water, shade, shelter and a kiddie pool to cool off in.

If I have no choice but to keep my dog outside, what kind of shelter is necessary?

The law requires that your dog has access to “proper” shelter at all times! Just as you would not like to be exposed to the rain or hot sun neither does your dog! Be sure your dog has a comfortable, weather-resistant house to protect him from the elements. Call our Cruelty Department if you see a dog being neglected without proper shelter at 954.266.6823.