Hurricane Harvey: Police threaten dog owners with arrest amid fears chained-up pets could drown

'I promise you that I will hold anyone accountable that unlawfully restrains their dog,' says police chief who witnessed pet drown

Chris Baynes
Saturday 26 August 2017 17:33
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A dog tied up in Fort Bend Country, Texas, during flooding in 2016. It was later rescued.
A dog tied up in Fort Bend Country, Texas, during flooding in 2016. It was later rescued.

Police have urged dog owners not to chain up pets as Hurricane Harvey brings torrential rain and threatens devastating floods in the US.

A police chief in Montgomery County, Texas, said owners faced arrest if they failed to following the warning.

Thousands of people have fled their homes on Gulf Coast as winds of 130mph (209 kmh) batter the the state and forecasters warn of up to a metre (3.2ft) of rain.

Roman Forest Police Department said its Chief Stephen Carlisle had watched a chained-up dog die during flooding last year.

"Crews were shutting down the San Jacinto East Fork Bridge and told him about a dog tied to a tree out of reach in the distance as the water was rising," it said in a statement on Facebook.

"The dog barked and barked as the water kept rising until the water got high enough and the barks stopped."

Mr Carlisle added: "I promise you, that I will hold anyone accountable that unlawfully restrains their dog in extreme weather conditions.

"Dogs are your family members too."

It is against the law in Texas to restrain a dog outside during "extreme weather conditions" or between the hours of 10pm and 6am.

In May last year a dog was rescued moments from death in Fort Bend County, Texas, after the local sheriff spotted it tied up outside a house. He later adopted the dog.

The US National Weather service has warned Hurricane Harvey will bring “catastrophic and life-threatening flooding” to parts of Texas over the next few days.

Up to to 40 inches (102 cm) of rainfall is expected in some areas on the south-east coast.

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