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Leash Laws

The City of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County have strict leash laws that apply to all animals except cats (see the nuisance animal section for laws pertaining to cats).

Animals must be on a leash, contained within a fence or an operable and marked invisible fence. The invisible fence company should give owners a sign to place at the mailbox to indicate that there is an invisible fence present.

An animal may be loose in its own yard if there is an adult (18 years or older) immediately next to the animal and the animal responds to direct verbal commands of the person.

ALL dog owners that take their dogs for walks in their neighborhoods and/or in public parks (not designated as a dog park) are required to keep their dogs on leash and under physical restraint at ALL TIMES.  Please note that having the leash in your possession and not attached to the dog is not considered having the dog on a leash and you will still be subject to a fine.

All regulations aim to protect the health and safety of our citizens. Please be a responsible pet owner and abide by the law. Violations will be investigated and stiff fines may be applied. Fines range from a $50.00 citation for the first violation and up to a $500.00 citation and permanent seizure of the animal for a fifth violation.

To report an animal at large, please call 311. Please note that it could take up to 4 hours for an officer to respond. Any information about where the owner lives would help greatly.

Owners that have not been in violation before, or dogs that are not visibly seen loose by an AC&C Officer will receive a warning citation before violation citations will be written.