In winter, watch after the outdoor pets in your neighborhood. If you see an animal suffering from the cold, call (301) 262-5625 and choose option 1 for cruelty/neglect.
SPEAK FOR THOSE WHO CANNOT SPEAK FOR THEMSELVES
In these colder months, most of our cruelty calls are for backyard dogs without appropriate shelter or care. Especially in winter, pets kept outdoors can suffer from frostbite, exposure, and dehydration. Now is the time to be the voice for those who can’t speak for themselves. Keep an eye out for any outside pets that you know of. If they don't have what they need, let us know.
Look for Adequate Shelter
County law requires that outdoor dogs have weatherproof shelter made of non-metal material. It must be large enough for the dog to stand up, lie down, and stretch out without touching the sides or top. (But if it’s too large, though, the dog can’t hold its own body heat.) It should also be windproof and waterproof, and should have a solid floor that sits at least 2 inches off the ground.
In winter (between November 1 and March 30), the dog must have dry bedding such as cedar chips, hay, or straw. (Blankets and towels tend to hold moisture and can freeze.)
Cats maintained outside must be confined on their owner's property and provided with proper shelter as well.
Look for Food and Water Too
Fresh water should be available for the animal at all times, and it should not be allowed to freeze. The animal must also be given sufficient food, as they need more calories in the winter to increase their body heat.
The ideal situation for any pet is to be part of the family and live indoors, but some people, for various reasons, are simply not able to bring their animals inside. This winter, please make a difference for outdoor pets and make sure they have adequate shelter and sustenance.
If you know of an animal that is living under substandard care, please tell us. Call (301) 262-5625 and choose option 1 for cruelty/neglect. Thank you.