Woman Shamed For Leaving Dogs Out In Blizzard Puts Them Right Back Outside
A Brooklyn, New York, woman who left her two dogs out in an uninsulated shack during the blizzard and was issued a summons doesn't appear to think she's done anything wrong.
After a video of the dogs suffering the storm went viral, and complaints poured in from neighbors about the obviously suffering dogs, cops visited June Wiggins on Saturday evening, as the snowstorm was pummeling the city. They told her to bring the senior dogs, Prince and Egypt, inside.
"The dog depicted in the video has severe arthritis," a neighbor, Evelyn Costa, who filmed the viral video, wrote on Facebook. She added that the dog "is half blind and has its paws burned from sidewalk salt [his] owner dumps on [the] path to [the] lock up box (uninsulated shack)." Costa says Wiggins has been leaving her dogs outside for YEARS - and the snowstorm that blanketed the east coast was no exception.
When cops returned on Sunday to check on the dogs, they were already back outside in the frigid temperatures. Wiggins was issued a C summons, which could lead to a few days in jail if she's cited again.
While the ASPCA has gotten involved, the organization told the New York Daily News that the living conditions still "do not meet the definition of animal cruelty as defined by the law, making seizure by the police impossible."
An organization called Guardians of Rescue came to the aid of the dogs to help improve their situations. "Working through the night to make sure these dogs are warm and dry," the organization posted on Facebook on Monday. "The owner will not at this time surrender the dogs, and we legally cannot remove them."
So, Guardians of Rescue worked to improve the shack where the dogs live, installing extra insulation to keep them warm.
"It is a complicated case but with help from the ASPCA and local police, we are able to improve their living conditions," Guardians of Rescue wrote. "We don't give up easily!"
"Hopefully some progress for the poor, neglected dogs, thanks to Guardians for Rescue group," Costa wrote on Facebook after the group improved the dogs' home.
But many still believe that it just isn't enough.
"We need LAWS that make this kind of neglect a FELONY," Costa wrote. "Lawmakers need to pass legislation protecting animals from their 'owners.'"