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UPCOMING CHANGES FOR ANIMAL OWNERS: Effective on July 1, 2020, the Virginia General Assembly has added the following language to the definition of “Adequate shelter” in Virginia Code 3.2-6500: The outdoor tethering of an animal shall not constitute the provision of adequate shelter (a) unless the animal is safe from predators and well suited and well equipped to tolerate its environment; (b) during the effective period for a hurricane warning or tropical storm warning issued for the area by the National Weather Service; or (c) (1) during a heat advisory issued by a local or state authority, (2) when the actual or effective outdoor temperature is 85 degrees Fahrenheit or higher or 32 degrees Fahrenheit or lower, or (3) during the effective period for a severe weather warning issued for the area by the National Weather Service, including a winter storm, tornado, or severe thunderstorm warning, unless an animal control officer, having inspected an animal's individual circumstances in clause (c) (1), (2), or (3), has determined the animal to be safe from predators and well suited and well equipped to tolerate its environment.

Also effective on July 1, 2020, the minimum length of a tether will be increased to at least 15 feet or four times the length of the animal, whichever is greater. The Town Animal Control Officer will be monitoring animals that are tethered outdoors for compliance.

State Animal Control Laws

Town Animal Control Laws