Dear Neighbor - Happy New Year! As I was walking past your house the other day, as I have done numerous times before, I noticed your four legged, furry friend outside. It was great to finally be able to get out of the house after our terribly frigid weather we've had.
Your dog seems to spend much of his time outside by himself. Each time we walk past him, he becomes excessively anxious and irritated. I'm not sure if your dog is more worked up by the sight of a human or another dog, but either way I fear if he were to break free, it would result in someone or something being harmed.
I had a dog with strong reactivity towards other animals. We were on vacation and I had him on a brand new 100+ pound tie out wrapped around a huge tree. I had done everything to keep him secured, but unfortunately when he saw another dog, he took off and broke the tie out. Thank goodness I was right there and was able to stop the interaction before it escalated.
I believe my dog had been living on the end of a chain before he came to live with me. He had scars on his front legs where a tie out would have gotten tangled. He had poor social skills not only with other animals, but people too. He was afraid of every noise, every movement, and every person. This fear caused aggression. The only thing he knew to do to protect himself was show aggression.
Our dogs are highly social. They are predisposed to form attachments with people and to become dependent on people and to rely upon their guidance in unfamiliar situations. Continuous chaining deprives them of their pack instincts, and causes high levels of stress along with psychological and behavioral problems. Chaining is also hazardous for dogs since it is common for dogs to get tangled (and sometimes hanged) on chains, ropes, and cords. Being chained makes a dog vulnerable to harm or harassment from other animals or humans and does not allow them the option to flee a dangerous situation, forcing them to instead develop territorial and aggressive tendencies. Numerous attacks on people (often children) by tethered dogs have been documented. Ordinances that prohibit or restrict chaining and tethering are being passed in more counties, cities, and townships every year.
My hope is that you will reconsider tethering your dog outside for no more than 20 minutes at a time. I hope that you would bring your dog into your home and let him become a member of your family and enjoy his company. Having a dog in your home does not mean that he needs to be in your bed or on the furniture if that is something you don't want. They can be taught good manners to make life with a dog in your home pleasant.
For the safety of your dog, other animals and people (including children), bring your dog inside of your home and make him a member of your family.
A Concerned Neighbor