As Temperatures Drop, THLN Underscores the Passage of Safe Outdoor Dogs Legislation to Prevent Unnecessary Cruelty and Death

Just this week, a dog was found frozen to death near Lubbock 

Austin, Texas – On February 10, Floydada Animal Services reported that a dog was found frozen to death near Lubbock from being left outside in freezing temperatures. As the Texas Humane Legislation Network (THLN) works to pass Safe Outdoor Dogs legislation and establish a better standard of care for dogs left outdoors, the organization urges Texans to immediately report to local authorities all dogs without shelter on these bitter-cold nights. 

"Our hotline has been swamped with calls as the temperatures have dropped," said Shelby Bobosky, Executive Director of THLN. "We have received many reports of freezing and dying dogs throughout the state and especially in West Texas."

SB 474 by Senator Eddie Lucio Jr. and HB 873 by Representative Nicole Collier include key elements to protect dogs from extreme outdoor temperatures that could have prevented that unnecessary death and prevent more in the coming days. The legislation would establish basic standards of outdoor shelter and care, and provide much-needed clarification to existing law for the safety of animals and their surrounding communities. 

"As seen in this week's tragedy, it is not enough to provide temporary fixes like free dog houses. We must change the law to require adequate shelter," said Bobosky. "The Safe Outdoor Dogs legislation ensures animals are not subject to extreme conditions, without infringing upon the freedom of Texas dog owners."

Along with preventing exposure to extreme temperature, the legislation also ensures dogs have access to drinking water and can move around without being trapped in standing water or mud. The legislation strikes the 24-hour waiting period in the current statute so that law enforcement can address critical situations immediately, instead of only after tragedy has struck. 

To learn more or to schedule an interview about safe outdoor dog legislation, contact Cara Gustafson at 561-797-8267 or [email protected]

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