Friday, June 29, 2007

Go To Jail. Do Not Pass Go. Do Not Collect $200.

Six dogs died after being left outside Thursday in what the Arizona Humane Society is calling the worst day ever for heat-related pet deaths. The body temperatures of all six dogs had soared to over 109 degrees after they were left with no water or shelter in the summer sun, according to Kim Noetzel of the Humane Society. The temperature in Phoenix on Thursday afternoon was 109 degrees. In each case, the owners may face criminal animal cruelty charges.

I keep warning people to not leave their pets outside, unattended, unless they have built a proper indoor/ outdoor kennel. Maricopa County now has a full time prosecutor that specializes in animal welfare crime, and they will put you in jail if they find you have neglected your dog. But, not all listen.

I have watched dogs in the heat here, so I have a bit of knowledge on the subject. Even at 109 degrees, most dogs can be fine, provided they are supervised, have shade, have a wading pool in the shade, have plenty of water to drink, and are brought inside periodically if they look like they are getting hot. Note that the dogs that died had no shade, no water at all, and no supervision.

Further, some breeds do better in the heat than others, and dogs that aren't always in air conditioning can adapt to the heat... otherwise how do the coyotes make it in the Arizona desert? Coyotes are essentially dogs. I bet six coyotes didn't die of heat exhaustion yesterday.

In other news...

New York City: Get ready to wake up in the city that doesn't peep. That's the goal of the overhauled city noise code that takes effect Sunday. Boisterous bars, yapping dogs, ear-splitting construction and even Mister Softee ice-cream trucks are all in the cross hairs of the new rules... Also getting the muzzle treatment will be the city's pooches. Dogs that bark for 10 straight minutes - five minutes at night - could get their owners fined $75 to $175.

Most dog barking noise ordinances are more obnoxious than the dogs they are supposed to address. I do feel that there should be some kind of barking ordinance in cities to quiet incessantly barking, loud dogs. But, somehow they need to be written in such a way to not encourage the local busybodies to police the behavior of every dog and dog owner in the neighborhood.

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