By: Noelani Mathews
January 12, 2017
LOWNDES COUNTY, GA (WCTV) -- Winter weather can be harmful and even deadly for pets.
However, Lowndes County officials say every time the temperature drops, residents report neighboring dogs left outside in the cold.
They say several complaints were made this past weekend.
Lowndes County Public Information Officer Paige Dukes says, "If you're really cold outside and you couldn't stay outside without additional warmth, than your pet either needs to be brought inside or given additional warmth as well. The same thing with the rain."
They're also reminding local pet owners that leaving pets outside can be considered animal cruelty and is a violation of county ordinance and state law.
Officials say a case can be taken to court, but most callers choose to remain anonymous.
In Georgia, pets are considered personal property. Lowndes County officials say this means it is illegal to take another person's pet, even if it's out of concern.
It also means that animal service officers are even more restrained on how they can handle a call if the pet can't be seen being harmed.