With weather forecasters predicting more days of brutal cold and snow across the East Coast of North America, animal rescues are urging people to bring their animals indoors. Citizens are also being encouraged to report any animals they see left outside in the freezing cold to authorities.
The urgent warnings come after a high number of dogs have been found frozen to death outside of their homes.
One woman was charged with animal cruelty after police in Hartford, Connecticut, found her dog chained to a small shelter outside of her home – the dog was frozen solid.
A dog in Cincinnati died similarly. “The dog was found in an outside dog house with no insulation. The dog was frozen to death due to the severe cold weather,” read a Facebook post from the office of county sheriff Richard K. Jones. “Sheriff Jones would like to remind everyone that freezing to death is a horrible way for an animal to die.”
Another incident in Detroit hit rescuers particularly hard. Detroit Dog Rescue said a Pomeranian mix left outside its shelter at night was found dead the next day. Authorities are actively searching for the person responsible.
Not a site I ever want my crew to discover. Sadly, a Pomeranian Mix was dumped in front of Detroit Dog Rescue last…
A few days later, the group rescued another dog who was found shivering in a barrel outdoors. The dog sustained frostbite to his paws and penis.
“Trying to escape the frigid temperatures he curled up and crouched down, but even his underbelly and penis began to freeze,” Detroit Dog Rescue wrote about Joey in a Facebook post. “His feet are so painful he doesn’t want to stand.”
This case hits too close to our hearts, because Joey is the dog we all think of at night. The dog that is freezing,…
“Dogs, cats and horses depend on our care, especially during life-threatening cold snaps. Take the animals in, or somehow provide a safe environment for them,” Wayne Pacelle, president and chief executive of the Humane Society of the United States, said in a statement.
Several states and cities now have increased penalties against pet owners who leave animals outside in extreme cold weather. In some cases felony animal cruelty charges apply, although the laws vary region to region.
Please contact your local animal control and rescue groups if you see a dog in distress, as they will have the legal authority to intervene. If you would like to learn more about how to help dogs left outside in the cold, read our article, What to Do if You See a Dog Left Outside in Cold Weather.