In today’s technological world, the use of social media sites to report abuse or bring to our government officials’ attention something that is not right, is now second nature. We all know of New Jersey’s Major, Cory Booker, rescuing a dog left out in the cold when a constituent sent him a Twitter message about it. Well, in Mexico City, Mexico, animal lovers have also turned to Twitter to get the authorities involved in the rescue of a dog locked in a car for three days.
In the neighborhood Colonia Roma Norte, a German shepherd was left inside a parked truck for three days with no access to food or water.
Local residents knew leaving an animal inside a car is abuse and they were not going to stand by it. The concerned citizens called authorities and used social media sites to report the act of cruelty.
Many Twitter messages with the hashtag “#RescatenAlPerritodelaRoma” (#RescueThe RomaDog) started circulating. They informed the general public and authorities about the neglected dog inside a Ford Truck with license plates 967PSL. The car was parked on Mérida and Guanajuato Street.
Local residents stated the owner of the truck was a food street vendor who used the truck to reserve his Friday spot.
According to Twitter user @CaELiKe, the truck seemed to be unlocked, but the concerned animal lovers did not want to be charged with trespassing and stealing private property by opening the car’s doors and extracting the dog.
After the trending social media campaign, firefighters, police and a registered animal organization arrived on the scene to rescue the dog. Fire Chief Raúl Esquivel made a public statement saying his unit was present and working with other organizations to bring the canine to safety.
On Jan. 28, 2014, the dog was rescued and taken to Protección Animal y Seguridad Publica (an animal rescue facility), where he was fed. He was later transferred to la Unidad de Vigilancia Animal and examined by a veterinarian who found the dog had not suffered any injuries from his incarceration.
The vehicle’s owner was cited in front of a judge and charged with animal cruelty. The man confirmed the car was his but said the dog wasn’t. He was just looking after the pet for a few days.
For now the dog is under the State’s care until the judge determines what will happen to him. Many have come forward wishing to adopt the dog, among those is Twitter user @CaELiKe.
Since last year Mexico City has been penalizing animal abusers more strictly. They can now serve a prison sentence of 2- to 6- years and they must pay a fine of more than $2,000.