Dog Blog

Saturday, April 26, 2008

And the next question for this newest pet protection law is, will it be enforced?  Will police actually pull dog and driver over and issue a citation or a DUD (Driving under the Dog)?  I have serious doubts.  We already have passed a California law that prohibits leaving an animal unattended in a car on a hot day. Today, as I was leaving the grocery store, I saw a man get out of his SUV and leave his dog in the car while he went into the store.  Although there was a strong wind, the Mercury hit the 80s today.  These sudden warming trends spell trouble for dogs.  

It was too warm to leave a dog inside a car, even for a little while with the rear windows ajar, in this case about 6 inches.  I have found confronting these thoughtless idiots unproductive in the past, but it so happens that the man walked right past a policeman in his car who is always on duty outside the supermarket during the day (you're on your own after dark).  I walked up to the cop, who had his door braced wide open with his foot because it was too warm for him inside his patrol car, and reported the dog that was left in the car.  He asked me which car, so I pointed it out to him.  He didn't get out of his car to go investigate the situation or check on the dog's welfare but thanked me for reporting it.  I'm sure he just marked me off as some nosy woman and went about whatever he was doing before I walked up.  The dog could probably stick his head out the window and perhaps get  a little relief for a time from the heat rising inside the car, but regardless of the weather and number of inches the window was left ajar, the fact remains that the man leaving his dog unattended in the car on a warm day could have put it in jeopardy, and this is an offense punishable by $500 or a year in jail.  These together would not be sufficient punishment for endangering a dog's life, in my opinion.  I had to leave, although I wanted to observe what happened after I reported the offense, so I don't know whether the dog owner was cited or even warned, but I somehow doubt it.  I sincerely hope he didn't stay in the store longer than "just a few minutes."  

As the weather heats up in the valley in the coming months, dogs will continue to suffer and die while law enforcement continues to look the other way, as has been my experience in these situations in the past.  They clearly have bigger fish to fry and more bullets to fire at bachelor parties.



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