The “dog days of summer” can kill their namesakes, even if the origin of the phrase doesn’t have anything to do with that awful outcome. When dogs are kept chained and/or penned outside 24/7, PETA fieldworkers advocate for the animals’ safety and deliver food, fresh water, and custom-built doghouses. Now, during what will likely be the hottest summer on record, they’re creating shade for dogs when there’s none to be found. By installing poles and creating makeshift tents or extending a dog pen with a tightly stretched tarp, we help distressed dogs survive the worst of the grueling heat. Meet just five of the many “backyard dogs” we’ve helped survive extreme temperatures.
5 ‘Backyard Dogs’ Who Were Helped by PETA
1. Danger2. Max 3. Porsha4. Rocky5. Zion
Every day, PETA helps dogs just like Danger, Max, Porsha, Rocky, and Zion, who were languishing alone in backyards. Sometimes, the dogs we help don’t even have the basics, such as food, water, or shelter. We want all dogs to live indoors with families who love them, but we often work in areas where many people are unfamiliar with the concept of allowing dogs inside—and where the law doesn’t prohibit people from keeping dogs chained all day and night.
If we can’t convince the families we work with to allow their dogs indoors—and if the dogs aren’t being kept in illegal conditions—our fieldworkers do everything they can to improve the lives of these lonely animals and educate their owners by setting an example. A doghouse is no substitute for a real home, but it makes a world of difference to the dogs who previously had nowhere to escape from scorching heat or other weather extremes. Every dog who’s visited by our fieldworkers is also given toys, treats, and desperately needed affection.
How You Can Help ‘Backyard Dogs’ in Your Area
An effective way to help “backyard dogs” is to work with elected representatives to pass ordinances that ban or restrict chaining. To get started, see what current legislation on tethering dogs exists in your community.
Dogs should never be left outside unattended, but when they’re outside and deprived of access to water or shelter, the situation becomes an emergency—and local authorities should be contacted immediately. If these authorities are unresponsive, contact PETA for help. Dogs’ well-being—if not their lives—could depend on you.