A Facebook post from a Houston TV station announcing Texas’ new ban on chaining up dogs outdoors found an audience far beyond the local market, with the news making for the most popular link post on Facebook in the U.S. over the past week, beating out a slew of posts from conservative news sources.
The post from KTRK-TV has attracted more than 240,000 reactions, 15,000 shares and 10,000 comments since going up Tuesday, the day the new law went into effect, according to data compiled by social media tracking firm NewsWhip.
Unlike most other top posts on the platform, KTRK-TV’s post did not come with a description: It only contained a headline saying, “New animal law means no more dogs on chains in Texas,” along with an image of a chained-up dog.
The post broke past all the conservative news sources that typically dominate the platform, though it was certainly not a slow week for conservative news.
Right-wing pastor Franklin Graham and pundits Ben Shapiro and Dan Bongino combined to publish the six next most-popular link posts over the past week.
The law, called the “Safe Outdoor Dogs Act,” bans chaining up dogs that are outside, identifying chains as an unsafe tethering option. It also requires dogs to have access to drinking water and mandates “adequate shelter” for inclement weather conditions, among other new regulations. The act passed the Texas legislature last year with broad bipartisan support.
Conservative news sources and commentators have not accounted for the most popular post in two out of the first three weeks of 2022, despite a commanding end to 2021. The most popular post for the first week of the year was news about the death of beloved actress Betty White, who died on New Year’s Eve at age 99.