Pet owners must follow leash laws to keep pets and people safe in public.
But in a recent WUSA9 story, we highlighted examples where people were not complying.
Here are the penalties to breaking leash laws in DC and area counties:
District of Columbia
2.5.1. Pursuant to District law, no person owning, keeping or having custody of a dog in the District shall permit the dog to be on any public space in the District (with the exception of an official District dog park), unless the dog is firmly secured by a substantial leash. The leash shall be held by a person capable of managing the dog.
2.5.2. No dogs are permitted, with the exception of registered service dogs, on natural turf or synthetic turf fields, athletic courts, pools and pool areas, or playground areas.
2.5.3. Off-‐‐leash dogs are only permitted in DPR's designated dog park facilities and pursuant to applicable District laws and regulations.
Violators of DC Leash Law will be fined up to $25 for the first violation, $50 for the second violation happening within a 24-month period, and $100 for each following violation within a 24-month period. Civil charges may also apply.
Montgomery County, Md.
Any dog is at large if it is outside the owner's premises and not leashed, unless it is a service dog, is in a dog exercise area designated by the Maryland National Capital Park and Planning Commission, or is participating in an approved activity.
Any other animal (i.e., cat or livestock animal) is at large if it is outside the owner's premises and not leashed or immediately responsive to verbal or non-verbal direction.
The common area of a homeowner's association, condominium or cooperative is not the owner's premises.
Penalty for Violation: $100 for first offense, $500 for each subsequent violation."
Prince George's County, Md.
"It is against the law for the owner or custodian of any animal to allow the animal to run at-large. Any dog or cat that is found at-large may be impounded.
A Violation Notice may be issued to the owner of an animal found at-large by a County Police Officer or Animal Control Officer."
Fairfax County, Va.
"Dogs are not allowed to roam free.
A dog under owners supervision while lawfully hunting
Engaged in an obedience training class or show
While in a Fairfax County-sanctioned off-leash or dog exercise area"
"What will happen if my dog runs free and gets picked up by Animal Control Officers?
An unrestricted dog may be impounded (taken to the Animal Shelter)
If the owner is immediately located, the owner may be issued a summons."
Find an area dog park:
DC DOG PARKS