FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) — Fort Wayne Animal Care and Control officers have been to the 600 block of Florence Avenue — north of downtown — five times since Monday evening.
A sixth visit on Tuesday afternoon — around 2:00 p.m. — resulted in them in removing two dogs that appear to be huskies from the bed of a maroon Dodge Ram pickup truck with a shell covering the bed.
WANE 15 had also received messages about the truck and checked into it twice on Tuesday. Both times, the two dogs were still in the back of the truck parked right next to the intersection of Florence and Hensch Street.
Several neighbors who didn’t want to be identified said the dogs could be heard howling for hours on Monday night.
It’s unclear how long the truck was parked there with the dogs inside. It’s also not clear if they were being fed or given water.
An animal welfare notice was left on the truck’s windshield, with a notice that the dogs would be removed by FWACC if they were not removed by the owner. Although the notice associated the truck with the property it’s parked in front of, FWACC Deputy Director Lisa Cain told WANE 15 that the truck doesn’t belong to any property owners in the area, but there is someone who knows the owner of the truck.
They’ve been working with that person to try and notify them that the dogs are in unsuitable living conditions.
Cain told WANE 15 that the owner was not technically violating any Fort Wayne city ordinances.
Per the code, “No animal(s) shall be left unattended in a vehicle and/or in the open area of a vehicle or a trailer when conditions may constitute a health hazard to the animal(s) and/or jeopardizes the safety of the animal(s). Conditions may include but are not limited to; extreme temperatures (hot/cold), presence of dangerous materials, chemicals or objects, improper confinement or lack of necessary provisions.”
Because FWACC officers observed the dogs and didn’t find them to be distressed, and there were no temperature issues, there weren’t any violations; However, Cain said dogs have to be in a shelter made for them.
When there are complaints called in to FWACC, Cain said they will investigate numerous times and, following city ordinances, they can remove animals and give the owner notice to come pick them up and pay a fine.
“That’s why we’re working through, making sure that owner is aware that those dogs need to be removed and this isn’t appropriate,” she said.
She added that they’re familiar with one of the dogs in the truck. It was going to take several officers to remove it.
“We have history with this dog, and this dog is severely aggressive. So, this isn’t just a one-person pull, and again, dogs are property. It’s just like the truck they’re in. I can’t just go take their truck. Neither can the police. So, we have to follow legal parameters in order to get those dogs removed,” Cain explained.