San Antonio Animal Care Services is busy today, hitting the streets to find animals which are outside, especially left alone on chains, in this record heat, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
"Under normal circumstances that type of call is not our highest priority," ACS Director Heber Lefgren said. "But on days like today, where we recognize that it is critical, we raise the priority."
Leaving pets outside on a chain or leaving them without water on hot days was made a criminal offense by a recent rewriting of the city's Animal Code. Hefgren says people who do that to dogs can be arrested and fined, and the animal can be seized.
"If the officer finds themselves in the situation where the health of the animal is at immediate risk, the law gives us the authority to seize it," he said.
The law also requires that a pet have shade, and the pet have water which is not in a metal dish. On a super hot day like this, a metal dish can quickly heat water to near the boiling point, rendering it dangerous for the animal to drink.