Springettsbury Township is the latest municipality to consider adopting legislation that restricts the continuous tethering of outside dogs.
Township supervisors agreed to advertise the proposed ordinance at their meeting last week, township manager John Holman said.
Supervisors will take public comment about the issue at its July meeting, Holman said.
"We could adopt it at our next meeting. It doesn't mean we will," supervisor vice-chairman Don Bishop said. "I think there's a better-than-even chance it will be adopted, but there may be some local opposition to it."
Supporters: Supervisor Julie Landis is a strong supporter of the proposed ordinance.
"I think we, as a board, need to advocate for animals that cannot advocate for themselves," she said.
Bishop said he also supports the proposed tethering restrictions, despite initially being hesitant.
"I think there's enough potential for abuse that this is a reasonable extension of our regulations," he said. "I've had personal neighborhood experience with poor treatment of a dog, which was very disruptive to our neighborhood. It was very difficult for anyone to rectify that situation."
He said he hopes the proposed ordinance, if passed, would help authorities deal with similar cases.
The details: The proposed ordinance would affect only dogs that live their entire lives outside, according to Melissa Smith, executive director of the York County SPCA, and would be enforced by the SPCA's humane police officer.
If passed, owners of "24-7 outside dogs" would either have to build kennels or take their dogs inside regularly.
The ordinance would also require residents to bring in their outside dogs during severe weather, whether that be a blizzard or a heat advisory, Smith said.
Constantly tethered dogs are twice as likely to bite someone, posing safety
hazards for children and adults, according to Smith. Constant tethering can make dogs neurotic, anxious and aggressive, she said.
SPCA effort: It was the York County SPCA that crafted the original ordinance language, then urged every municipality in York County to consider adopting it.
In April, York Township and Mount Wolf became the first two municipalities in Pennsylvania to limit continuous dog-tethering when they passed versions of the SPCA ordinance.
Thirteen states either ban or restrict the tethering of dogs, according to the Animal Law Coalition, but Pennsylvania is not one of them.
Several municipalities are still considering the ordinance, according to Smith. Several others have voted it down, including the boroughs of West York, Dallastown and Dover, and West Manchester, Lower Windsor and Manheim townships.
-- Staff writer Liz Evans Scolforo (@ydcrimetime) contributed to this report.