We all love to take our dogs with us when we go out and about, but should you really leave your dog tied up unattended on the sidewalk while you go inside shops and restaurants? Animal welfare advocates say that there are too many threats to your dog’s well-being to risk it. In fact, it’s illegal to tie your dog up outside a shop in Vancouver, British Columbia.


Here are some common sense reasons why you shouldn’t do it.

  • Look at the facial expressions and body language of dogs you see left tied up outside. You’ll see how stressful it is for dogs when their owners leave them by themselves in unfamiliar places.
  • Did you know that one out of five dogs are lost or stolen in the U.S. every year? Certain breeds like Yorkshire Terriers, French Bulldogs, and Chihuahuas are particularly vulnerable to being stolen outside of shops and restaurants.
  • Your dog could get frightened by something and escape, or get injured if his leash gets tangled up or wrapped around a pole. A well-meaning stranger trying to help your dog could get bitten if your dog is scared.

VANCOUVER, BC: JANUARY 23 2012 -- A dog leashed to a bench on the Granville mall waits for it's owner, Vancouver, January 23 2012.  (Gerry Kahrmann / PNG Staff Photo) For Prov  News 00058785A

  • Your dog may be sweet, but the combination of being left alone by you and getting approached by strangers could trigger fear-based aggression. Little children will often want to reach out and pet dogs they see on the sidewalk, but your normally friendly dog could turn irritable and display hostility towards kids, and also other dogs walking by.
  • It’s common courtesy to supervise your dog. You can’t monitor your dog’s behavior on a busy city street if you’re not with him.







6 thoughts on “Why You Should Stop Leaving Your Dog Tied Up Outside of Shops

  1. I couldn’t have said it better. More crass most definitely, but certainly not better. This is a big issue with me since I live in a neighborhood with high walkability ratings. There are always dogs tied up outside of restaurants and shops and it breaks my heart. All too often I see kerfuffles with passing pooches or overheated dogs waiting interminably for their thoughtless owners. Thank you for posting.

  2. Thank you for sharing. Many people don’t realize the risk of leaving their pets outside – a good reminder to see things through their eyes.

  3. Thank you!!!! And for mentioning the body language. All the dogs are so happy to see their returning owner, all wagging tails and such, but the humans don’t see their dog expressing high stress body language: yawning, pacing, lip smacking, clenched mouth, etc. I’ve come to view these repeated tie-ups as humans get their daily latte, groceries, etc. as “microagressions” against their dog. It’s not nice, it’s not fair, and it’s as you so well said leaving them vulnerable to situations. I always wait with dogs tied up when I can — I usually just walk away when the owner comes, because the world is mad now and I don’t want hostility… but at least the dogs are watched / kept company.

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