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.
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.
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