I would like to implore pet owners to please think when it comes to their dogs and high temperatures. Dogs/animals are not invincible to heat. If it's hot to humans, it's hot to their pets.

On July 24, in the heat of the day (and it was hot), a man at BI-Mart had left his large dog chained in the back of his truck, jumping around from the hot metal in the bed of the truck and with no water. The dog was wearing a muzzle so even if he did have water available he couldn't have drunk any.

A dog can become overheated and die if it can't pant. The dog's owner, who had two children with him, (what does that teach kids?) was summoned on the intercom in the store.

He was scolded and the dog was given water by a responsible pet owner who had left his own dog home in the shade with water where he belonged. The poor dog drank profusely. The man said he would take him home.

This incident should never have happened. The dog could easily have died a miserable death.

I don't care how badly "Fido" wants to "go." He doesn't know better, but his owner should. If he or she doesn't, they shouldn't have a pet. There are untold numbers of people who have no business having a pet.

Whether it be because of neglect, cruelty or unwanted litter after unwanted litter which causes more suffering and the deaths of millions of kittens and puppies every year.

The same goes for extreme cold temperatures. Those of you who carry your dog in the back of your trucks, consider the wind chill factor. They could easily suffer frostbite, especially their ears.

And many people don't realize outdoor dogs need as much, if not more, water (not ice) to drink when it's very cold. It takes a lot of energy to stay warm.

This world would be a better place if people would consider the needs and well-being of their loyal, furry friends before acquiring them.

Pets can be great companions and bring a lot of joy, but if you can't or aren't willing to care for them properly, please don't have any. Animals can't speak for themselves. So it's up to those who care to speak for them when they witness neglect or abuse.

Teresa Vanderpool

Pilot Rock

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