Animal control officers in Saginaw County frequently receive calls about dogs left outside in the freezing cold. They are particularly busy this year, with the temperatures in the area falling below zero.
Now they plan on spending the night outside in the freezing cold to help raise awareness about the dangers of leaving dogs outside in the winter weather.
Three brave officers have volunteered to sleep outdoors, with two staying in custom-made dog houses.
Tricia Barnes outlined what she and her fellow ACO’s Joaquin Guerrero and Anthony Trevino have signed up for:
“I’m gonna sleep in a dog house with little to no straw and a heavy chain around my neck. Joaquin Guerrero will be sleeping in a house with straw and Anthony Trevino is crazy – he’s not going to have any shelter.
(If we get too cold we will go inside and not allow ourselves to freeze to death.)…People are welcome to come out and support us that night.”
The doghouses the officers will stay in are large enough for them to crawl into and sit down. They will be hosting the event at Apple Mountain and Project Underdog, which helps outside dogs in the community will also participate. Any funds raised will go towards helping dogs in their community.
The event will not only help educate people as to what dog outside dogs need to be properly insulated, but also when they should come inside.
Joaquin Guerrero pointed out, “Lots of times when people become dog owners they think, ‘oh they’re a dog, they can sustain, do whatever’. But they’re not educated for the summer weather, the fall, the spring, the winter, and we run into these problems.”
The organizers will be taking every precaution. Medical personnel will be there, as will students from a local elementary school, who will monitor the temperatures and report what the effects would be on pets and on the three officers.
“The kids will monitor their temperatures and comfort levels throughout the night to provide vital real life information on what animals endure in the cold,” Saginaw County ACO writes.
These officers are showing that through dedication, grit and education, they can better the lives of dogs in their community.