I'm sure that more than most of us are well aware that keeping your dog outside on a long grueling hot and humid summer day is not a good idea, but were you aware that it's actually against the law?

At least in Massachusetts. WWLP/22 News Springfield reports that under Massachusetts law, it is illegal to keep your dog tethered outside for longer than 15 minutes during a weather advisory, warning, or watch.

Right now, beautiful Berkshire County is under a Heat Advisory until 8 p.m. Tuesday evening. Make sure you keep your dog(or any pet) in mind while you are also keeping an eye on your kids, family members, elderly neighbors, and yourself.

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Recently in a press release, the Animal Rescue League said that many people may not be aware that the laws about tethering changed back in 2016. In regards to that law, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts states:

A person shall not leave a dog outside when a weather advisory, warning or watch is issued by a local, state or federal authority or when outside environmental conditions including, but not limited to, extreme heat, cold, wind, rain, snow or hail pose an adverse risk to the health or safety of the dog based on the dog’s breed, age or physical condition, unless the tethering is for not more than 15 minutes.

And it's not a law to be taken lightly, folks. Officers with the Animal Rescue League or the MSPCA can issue a $50 fine for the first offense, $100 for a second offense, and $300 and possible loss of ownership for subsequent offenses.

ARL Law Enforcement Director Lt. Alan Borgal said in a statement, "Being in the extreme heat leads to heat stroke or dehydration very quickly. Tethering a dog can also cause physical harm and mental distress. These laws are in place to protect animals, and to ensure that they are being taken care of properly.”

For more info on the tethering law, visit here and for more on the story, visit WWLP's website here.

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