Dog Left in Hot Car at Oconee Walmart, Two Charged With Animal Cruelty
An English Bulldog that had no access to water and was panting heavily was turned over to Animal Control, deputies report. An arrest does not mean a conviction.
A Bogart couple was charged with public drunkenness and animal cruelty Tuesday after deputies say their pet English Bulldog was found tied to the floorboard of a car with no access to water.
Oconee County Sheriff's deputies were called to Walmart on Epps Bridge Parkway around 12:30 p.m. where managers said a woman had entered the men's restroom and was yelling at her fiance. The man told deputies the argument was about lost keys.
According to the incident report, both said they had recently taken drugs prescribed to them.
"The female subject appeared to have a difficult time keeping her eyes open, was slurring her speech, had difficulty standing and appeared to be heavily under the influence," one deputy noted in the report. The other responding deputy wrote: "The male suspect seemed sleepy, off balance, dizzy, and passed out several times." The two were asked to call for rides.
Then the woman said their pet dog had been left inside the 2007 Chrysler 300 they came in and deputies went into the parking lot to look for it. An English Bulldog named Buddy was found on the rear floorboard of the car.
One deputy writes: "The dog was tied up with an orange rope and could not move from his position on the floorboard. The dog did not have access to water and was panting heavily. I was able to cut the rope and free the dog."
Weather.com reports temperatures from 12:04 to 1:04 p.m. Tuesday in Watkinsville were between 88 and 91 degrees and that it "felt like" 94-97 degrees. According to Paw-Rescue.Org: "It takes only minutes for a pet left in a vehicle on a warm day to succumb to heatstroke and suffocation."
Heidi Marie Klingelsmith, 32, was charged with public drunkenness after deputies say she was uncooperative. Shortly after, deputies returned to the store where they say David Jonathan Wood, 42, was lying on the sidewalk asking people for money. He, too, was arrested and charged with public drunkenness. Both also face charges of animal cruelty.
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