Activists want more enforcement of dog tether laws in Detroit

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After an animal rescue group posted a video of a dog tied up by on a chain in Detroit, activists made their way to city hall wanting tougher tether law enforcement.

Detroit Pit Crew Dog Rescue posted a video of a dog chained up, they say in southwest Detroit.

"Put them on a chain and they have nowhere to go," said protestor Nancy Shankin. "That would be like holding you down tethered to something when you can't move. How would you feel."

That was enough to get her and a small group to protest outside city hall on Wednesday afternoon, even though they say one of the dogs at the house was rescued. 

"They did get one of the dogs they found in the backyard, that was in terrible condition," said protestor Connie Fisher. "They surrendered it but were paid $100 to surrender it. They had to pay $100 to get this dog away from this man."

"What got me was the dog that was on the porch," Shankin said. "That animal control went to the other day, and they can't do anything. They won't write tickets; they will not take the dog. That is animal abuse."

FOX 2: "An animal control officer did show up, but they say a ticket was never issued?" 

"We educate the owner," said Ebony Robinson, Detroit Health Department. "The owner immediately took the dog off the tether, and took the dog into the house. We will follow-up as necessary at this time there is no active violation."

Ebony Robinson with the city says a ticket for the owner of the animal in the video isn't off the table. She says on a broader scale; the city is responding to every complaint -- sometimes getting 60 per day.

"We do have to prioritize our resources towards those dangerous and stray animals that are roaming the streets," Robinson said. "And we do that first before we get to the other calls."

The Detroit Pit Crew called out the mayor and city to make sure dogs aren't left on chains. The city's response? They're doing their best with 10 animal control officers and an additional investigator -- the one with the power to write the tickets.

FOX 2: "What do you say to folks who say you don't have enough (staffing)?" 

"I would say we work with what we have," Robinson said. "We have a strong team of dedicated city employees looking out for the well-being of Detroiters."

The city says its working its staffing levels up to 18 officers, two investigators and three dispatchers.