Why the North Okanagan truck driver who accidentally dragged dog to death won't be charged | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Why the North Okanagan truck driver who accidentally dragged dog to death won't be charged

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February 28, 2020 - 11:56 AM

The RCMP has confirmed the driver of a pickup truck whose dog fell out of the box and was dragged to its death will not be charged or issued a ticket.

On Feb. 25 while driving on Wood Avenue in Armstrong a dog riding in the box of a pickup truck jumped out and was dragged along behind the truck. In a bid to alert the driver to what was happening, a vehicle pulled in front of the truck, forcing it to stop.

Armstrong veterinarian Britt Mills told iNFOnews.ca the dog’s owner was “absolutely devastated” when they realized what had happened.

"There was very little left of this dog,” she said. “The nature of the injuries rendered the dog almost unidentifiable."

Shortly after the events, the RCMP were alerted to the incident.

“The police officer followed up with the owners of the truck and, based on his discussions with the couple, used officer discretion to provide a verbal warning to the driver,” Vernon North Okanagan RCMP Corp. Tania Finn said in an email.

B.C. SPCA spokesperson Lori Chortyk said she couldn’t comment on why the RCMP didn’t take further action as the police handle each case individually.

“Often when their pet has been badly injured or killed that is really the deterrent for that person,” Chortyk said. “A fine or something is not going to do anything more than what those people are already going through, knowing that they were responsible for the death of their pet.”

Chortyk said it is an offence under the Motor Vehicle Act to not secure an animal properly in the back of a truck and if a person was proven to have been negligent under the Act it would create a window to move forward with animal cruelty charges.

However, Chortyk said the key to the issue is education and she hopes peer pressure can go some way to ending the practice.

“There are lots of habits that over the years (which) just become not as socially acceptable and I think this has to be one of these," she said. “It’s really a matter of saying this is wrong this is dangerous, and the more people that do that the less socially acceptable it will be to do this, at this point it’s a habit people have got into, and I truly believe people do not understand the dangers people are putting their pets in."

Chortyk said if people see dogs travelling in truck beds incorrectly secured (one leash is not enough to properly secure a dog) they should call the RCMP.

For information from the B.C. SPCA on the best way to secure a pet in a vehicle go here.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Ben Bulmer or call (250) 309-5230 or email the editor. You can also submit photos, videos or news tips to the newsroom and be entered to win a monthly prize draw.

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