Even if you're not the biggest animal lover you'd probably admit that it's not cool to leave a pet outside in freezing cold weather, but have you ever wondered if it's actually illegal to do so?

When breaking down something as concrete as a law in New Jersey, I usually try to keep my personal opinions to myself. But when it comes to the treatment of dogs, cats, and animals in general, I'm very passionate.

I can't hold back how I feel about people who treat their pets like trash. It INCENSES me and turns me into a judgmental person.


When I see or read or hear about a dog being left inside a hot car to suffocate to death or one that's left outside in the winter to weather freezing cold temperatures and/or snow, I don't just consider it to be heartless, it's flat out inhumane. Because if it's too cold for YOU to be outside in those conditions, it's too cold for THEM.

And I WILL, shamelessly, dime you out to the authorities. Sorry, not sorry.


But is it technically ILLEGAL in New Jersey to leave your pet outdoors in the cold Here's what the law has to say.

According to Vineland, New Jersey Police Department, 'New Jersey state law bans leaving pets outside in adverse weather conditions for extended periods of time, creating penalties for owners and allowing authorities to take custody of pets in some cases.'

The law, which was signed by NJ Governor Chris Christie back in 2017, prohibits leaving pets unsheltered outdoors when temperatures fall below freezing or reach 90 degrees, NJ.com reports.

Dog and Cat in the Snow
Thinkstock; Canva

Pet owners can reportedly be fined between $100 to $200 per incident if caught leaving their animals unattended outdoors in adverse weather for more than 30 minutes at a time.

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So, yes, it's illegal.

Wind chill, temperature, the size of your dog and its breed all come into play if you're wondering how long is too long to leave yours outside in the cold, according to petmd.com. So, get in the know.

Now, for some happy thoughts, here are a bunch of cats and dogs in costume.

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