Pinal County authorities investigate viral photo of dog hanging from truck by collar

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The Pinal County Sheriff’s Office continues to investigate a series of disturbing photos captured by a driver in the San Tan Valley late last week of a dog hanging by its collar on the side of a white pickup truck as the vehicle headed down a dirt road. The teen tried to get the pickup truck driver’s attention but could not and later returned to the location after notifying authorities. Pinal County dog hanging FB

According to AZCentral News, the sheriff’s department reported the situation had been an unfortunate accident. Navideh Forghani, a Pinal County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson, stated:

“The driver of the truck did not realize the dog fell out of the bed of the truck. The investigators are looking thoroughly into this case to determine it it was truly an accident or something else.”

When the photos of the Great Dane, later identified as Pearl were posted on the sheriff office’s Facebook page, the discussion became extremely divisive and angry with people demanding justice for the dog. The posts and discussion were soon deleted. Pearl’s owner said the dog had been on a puppy play date with another dog when the accident happened. The woman who owned Pearl, but declined to give her name, said she was “upset and distraught” over the loss of her family pet. As she recalled the tragic events, she said Pearl usually laid down in the back of the pickup, and she didn’t see anything odd in her side mirrors. When she arrived at her destination, the woman found Pearl’s lifeless body hanging from the side of the truck:

“I was freaking out and I was giving her CPR and mouth to mouth,” she said. “I was trying to get her to breathe.”

Tragically the dog’s neck was broken. The distraught owner claims she has been receiving threats against herself; people have been posting her personal information and have been driving by her home where she also trains Great Danes as service partners as well as breeding and selling them.

Channel 12 News reports the Arizona Humane Society spokesperson Bretta Nelson warns pet owners that horrifying situations  like this could easily happen.

“Your pet could have ridden with you 100 times but you just never know what’s going to happen. A lot of pet owners aren’t going to want to hear that you really shouldn’t allow pets to put a good portion of their heads or bodies out the windows,” stated Nelson. “They could try to jump out of a moving vehicle and injure themselves or get hit by another vehicle.”

And now Pearl’s owner has to live with this tragedy, and has responded to the intense criticism stating:

‘Trust me, if I had any idea that this could have happened, I would have done something different.”

What are your thoughts? Should there be laws against dogs riding in the back of open pickup trucks? Is it dangerous for pet owners to allow their dogs to hang out the windows of their vehicles? How do we make it safer for our canine companions to travel ?

Photos via Facebook capture. Rest in peace Pearl. We are sorry humans let you down.

Follow the National Pet Rescue on Facebook.

30 replies
  1. susispot says:

    As I understand it, it IS AGAINST THE LAW in the Phoenix area to have a pet in the back of your truck. Maybe that is only for PHX. Pinal is further south. RIP sad dog. It does sound like a genuine accident.

  2. Angela Corso says:

    I’m always dismayed that people who handle dogs make themselves out to be victims when they do something really stupid that causes harm to an animal. She should be prosecuted for being neglectful to that poor dog!!! Stupidity does not get a pass!!

  3. Nancy Raymond says:

    Dogs should NEVER be in the open bed of a truck and if this woman had the professional skills she claims (breeding, training) she would know that. Sorry, I have no sympathy for her – I find it hard to believe she was so unaware of her dog strangling from the door – Great Danes are huge dogs and she just drove along – NAH!

  4. Barkley's Mom says:

    And why wouldn’t anyone that breeds Great Danes, trains service dogs and with ANY sort of intelligence know that “something like this could happen”? Yes I hope she has to live with the sight of her dog hanging lifeless from her truck! That is the very least this POS should endure! Although it should be common sense, yes there should be laws against dogs riding in open truck beds and hanging their heads out of cars to make it clear to these morons what can happen. Obviously many people don’t seem to be able to grasp the concept of how to travel with their pets safely! Can’t anyone use their brains anymore?

  5. Debra says:

    She’s a dog breeder, and that’s a red flag right there. If she doesn’t know why it’s wrong to breed dogs and still does it, she’s going to do other things that are wrong in regards to her animals. She didn’t even think anything like this could happen. Here’s a quote from her:

    ‘Trust me, if I had any idea that this could have happened, I would have done something different.”

    Really? She is supposed to know that this could’ve happened! My blood is boiling!

  6. Star Shelley says:

    Very sad situation, and there should be a law, against people putting their dogs on their trucks. Even when they are tight down, accidents can happen. All should put their dogs in a crate for transportation.

  7. Darla says:

    Dogs should NOT be allowed to ride in the open bed of a pickup for this exact reason. I don’t care if the dog is back there on a leash or not, ANYTHING can happen and the result will not be good. Now, as far as a dog hanging its head out of the window of a vehicle, I’ve had 3 Yellow Labs and only 1 has wanted to have his head out. I don’t let him do it very often but when I do, the window is not open very far and there’s no way his entire body could get through the window. Even so, I know there’s always the chance of an accident and the window could pop out and his body could be catapulted through the air. I’ve also read that you shouldn’t let the dog hang its head out of the window because bugs, etc. can get in the dog’s eyes and ears. Bottom line…….keep your dog INSIDE the car with all windows closed.

  8. Joanna says:

    I call BS on this accident story. There’s no way they didn’t know the dog was,missing from the back of the truck or that it was was hanging from the side of the truck and why did they leave the poor baby on the road like trash. I’m just not buying their story and if the authorities believe it then they’re very naive. I cry out for justice for Pearl.

  9. Stephen Lee Phillips says:

    ‘Trust me, if I had any idea that this could have happened, I would have done something different.”

    Are you a f*cking IDIOT??? No CLUE of the very real danger your negligence posed for your precious companion???

    Even in our small town (population <3700), we have ordinances mandating that ALL animals MUST be safely and securely contained within adequate devices that are themselves SECURELY fastened to an open vehicle bed… something that ANYONE with half a brain shouldn't need a law to mandate!

    You deserve the harshest criticism – despite the agonizing loss of a companion you claim to have loved so greatly: I hope the memory of the senseless, needless, agonizing death precious Pearl suffered haunts you for the rest of your life…

  10. Kathleen Drude says:

    If I’m to believe what this woman is saying and she supposedly breeds and trains these beautiful dogs then she is one very stupid person! No dog should be allowed to be in the flat bed of a truck or allowed to hang all the way out of a window of a moving vehicle! This is not rocket science people! Make it a law! No dogs in the back of trucks no dogs hanging all the way out of windows of moving vehicles!

  11. linda says:

    DUMB BITCH!!! Why didn’t you have the dog inside the truck? Great Danes are huge dogs how can you not notice Pearl was hanging outside the trunk you POS!

  12. Mandy says:

    She should be charged for this crime. She had to have known the dog was there it had to have hit the truck maid noise on top of fitting the truck. This is so horrible an she a fucken lire. She new she new so sad for the dogs that are in her care what might be happening to them

  13. Tina says:

    It’s against the law in San Antonio. Although my husband was also in the back of the truck we still got a ticket for our dog being back there not tied!!!

  14. djaz says:

    You can be as angry and outraged as you like, but I have no reason to believe that a person who takes her dog on play dates is horrible and deserves death.

    Back it up, perhaps, because this is not constructive. She has learned a horrible lesson that other people can take heed.

    Every time I open a page, lately, someone wants another person to die. INSANE.

  15. Mariann says:

    I personally feel it like this: Even if she were sincere in her sentiment about what happened-I have a few questions.

    First, you didn’t hear your dog fling over the side of the truck?? It’s a Great Dane we are talking about, not a chihuahua!?!

    Second, suppose you didn’t hear it. Are you then saying that you didn’t hear anything untoward driving down the dirt road? AKA: the lifeless body of your “pet” dangling and banging the side?

    Third, you never check your side mirrors? If set up appropriately, you should have NEVER missed seeing your dog dangling over the side.

    Lastly, you are heartbroken and devasted about the tragic loss of your “beloved” pet….but you didn’t even put her back in the truck and cart her home. You just left her in the dirt like garbage….

    Am I the only one seeing the red flags here?

  16. Mandy says:

    I couldn’t agree with you more. All the red flags are there. An why didn’t you take him to the vet if you loved him so much? Why did you turn down a dirt road an disposed him like trash? There’s one reason you thought you’d get away with it an that no one seen any thug. Were is the justice for this pore defenseless animal. Is the law there just blind to what they are seeing right in front of them really. This is no accident the accident is that she got caught. Some one needs to give her the same cruelty she gave that defenseless helpless dog.

  17. Ruth says:

    Unfortunately, Pinal County is behind MOST other counties in Arizona. They’re one of the MOST lax on: burning TRASH (yes, they still allow it out here and it STINKS!); when someone is KNOWN be burning OUTSIDE of burn hours, they give them a pass EVERY time they respond to a complaint; they have to practically be present to observe ANY abuse of ANY animal, including livestock. A lot of hateful people get away with FORCING others to breathe their toxic crap burning, FORCE others to repeatedly witness terrible abuse and starvation of all types of animals out here. Property damage of any kind by a neighbor thug? Don’t even bother reporting it, because they do NOTHING, then turn around and tell their “buddies” in the area WHO you are and WHAT you complained about. Reeks of good ole boy corruption and prejudice. I lived in Maricopa County for 27 years and NEVER came across this stuff from the repressive, dark ages. Astounding, but I pray that God gives others fighting for good changes the strength and guidance necessary to bring these changes to fruition.


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