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The Animal Services Division of the county police is issuing reminders that the department is enforcing the Anti-Cruelty Conditions for Dogs regulation during the extreme cold weather the area is experiencing.
The regulation prohibits leaving animals unattended outside, considering that doing so under current conditions is an act of cruelty.
Section II-C of the regulation says that “a person must not tether a dog under circumstances that endanger its health, safety, or well-being including: unattended tethering of the dog during a weather emergency.”
In addition, any dogs spending time outdoors must have access to shelter to protect them. Temperatures are expected to drop into single digits Thursday through Saturday night, with daytime highs Friday and Saturday not expected to reach 20 degrees.
The penalty for a violation is $500.
“ASD Officers will be on-call, patrolling neighborhoods and responding to any animal-related emergencies,” according to a county press release. “If you see an animal left outside that appears to be in danger, please call the Animal Services Division immediately at 301-279-8000.”