Kathy Moreno and Heather Barnett were concerned over something they saw outside a rural Texas residence. On a freezing winter day, the two women claim they saw a dog living outside the house. Its only shelter was a plastic crate.
Kathy and Heather snapped a few photos and shared them with their Facebook friends. They also called the police, hoping for a resolution.
However, authorities left without doing anything. They referenced Texas state law, which states only that a dog cannot be left tethered outside if the temperature falls below 32 degrees. Since the dog in question was not tethered, no action was taken.
Still, Kathy and Heather spent restless nights worried that this dog, or any dog for that matter, was sleeping alone in the subzero cold.
The American Veterinary Medical Association says that “cats and dogs are susceptible to frostbite and hypothermia and should be kept inside. Longer-haired and thick-coated dog breeds, such as huskies and other dogs bred for colder climates, are more tolerant of cold weather; but no pet should be left outside for long periods in below-freezing weather.”
Not every owner agrees with Kathy and Heather. One Facebook commenter writes: “I have 2 dogs that want to be outside even in this cold. One is a Redbone with a thin coat. She prefers to be outside with a fleece lined coat on the porch snuggled up with the Jack Russell under a heat lamp.”
On the flip side, many agree with the idea of stricter pet laws. “It is 21 degrees… please put your dogs inside,” another commenter writes. “It doesn’t matter how much fur they have. It’s cruel to leave them in this kind of weather!”
In the meantime, Kathy and Heather are on a mission to keep pets inside this winter — and they’re happy to confront any owners they deem irresponsible.
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