Each year around this time, we welcome a pack of new pups to the city. Now that most of the families with dogs have settled into their Boston homes, we want to say hello and help them find out what they need to know about having a dog in Boston.
Miss Maudie was less then 6-months-old when she posed for this photo.
Massachusetts state law requires that any dog more than 6-months-old must be licensed. In Boston, you can pick up a license at City Hall or download an application online from the Animal Care and Control page on the city website.
Boston's leash law is clearly stated on the city’s site, “When your dog is off your property, it must be on a leash.” City ordinance calls for a leash of 10-feet or less. That makes most retractable leashes technically illegal in Boston.
Felix prefers a leather leash or halter for his walks around the Back Bay.
Legal exceptions to the leash law are the “official off-leash hours” on the Boston Common, and inside the fences at dog parks like Peter’s Park in the South End and Ronan Park in Dorchester.
One more interesting aspect of Boston’s dog rules is that while out with your pup, if asked, you must be able to show that you are carrying something to pick up dog waste. This makes city dog walks a prime reason to attach a roll of pick-up bags to your leash.
Even if you use recycled bags to do the majority of your clean ups, the roll will give you back up supplies if you are stopped after your dog’s business is done, but the walk isn’t.
The one bit of guidance we do give to any dog family is that Angell Animal Medical Center Emergency Services are available, as they say, “...every day of the year, 24 hours each day.” We keep their number on our cell phones in case of an emergency. And, it can't hurt to take a ride to the location so you will know where you are going in a stressful time.
On upcoming Sundays, we'll fill you in on a few more things you might like to know about taking care of, and having fun with, your dog in Boston. And, if you have a great Sunday Dog you'd like us to feature, let us know in the comments below.
Get to know all of our Sunday Dogs at Boston Dogs.
Do you have an Amazon Gift Certificate to use? Or do you need to buy one for a gift? Remember to click over to Amazon from here to support this site!
Words: Penny Cherubino (Some of this material was previously published in Penny's City Paws newspaper column.)
Photography: © 2013-2014 Penny & Ed Cherubino