Brunswick County’s Statement on Animal Cruelty and Dog Tethering


Animal abuse and neglect is something that the County has, and always will, treat with the seriousness it deserves.

Both N.C.G.S. 14 – 360 and Brunswick County Ordinance Article III prohibit animal cruelty. In fact, these ordinances include in their definitions of animal cruelty the specific scenarios that we have heard from concerned citizens:

  • a collar, rope or chain embedded in and causing injury to an animal’s neck
  • dogs and cats left out in the rain, snow, extreme heat or cold without shelter
  • animals that have not been fed or watered adequately

Brunswick County Ordinance Article III Sec. 1-3-103 also states:

  • all animals must have access to a constant supply of clean, fresh water
  • all animals must have adequate and clean shelter from extreme weather
  • all owners must provide proper medical attention for sick, diseased or injured animals promptly

These current laws provide Animal Protective Services (APS) Officers with the full authority to investigate claims of animal cruelty, and to take appropriate action when necessary.

Furthermore, it is illegal for an owner or lessee of real property who knows, or based on facts and circumstances should know, of animal cruelty on that property to not report it to the Sherriff.

Based on all of these factors, the County does not feel that an additional ordinance is the answer. Rather, the continued proper application of existing laws, along with cooperation with citizens who suspect neglect or abuse, is the most effective way for our community to protect our animals.

We encourage anyone who witnesses or suspects animal cruelty and neglect to contact APS immediately at 910-754-8204.