PETA giving out free straw for dogs

Published 7:28 pm Tuesday, January 26, 2021

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The National Weather Service in Wakefield forecasts not only a 70% chance of rain and snow tonight, but also temperatures below freezing for the rest of the week. For that reason, representatives of People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) will bring straw bedding to the parking lot at Belk, 1354 Armory Drive, starting at noon today, Jan. 27.

Residents can pick up one bag of straw per dog. The giveaway, according to information provided by PETA, is intended to help Virginians comply with the new state law that not only prohibits leaving dogs chained outside when the temperature is 32 degrees or below, but also “requires that all dogs kept outdoors be provided with insulating straw or other bedding and that doghouses have a windbreak to help protect animals from the cold.”

PETA Senior Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch said, “Being left outdoors in the cold causes extreme misery and can even be a death sentence for a dog. While PETA urges everyone to keep dogs indoors with the rest of the family, we’re offering a small measure of help that will make a huge difference in dogs’ lives.”

PETA added that animals who are left outside in the cold can suffer from frostbite and exposure, become dehydrated when water sources ice over, and die. When kept tethered, dogs often become tangled and die because they’re unable to reach food, water or shelter. All dogs kept isolated outdoors — on chains or in pens — are denied the companionship that’s essential to these highly social pack animals.