The woman who lied to police about six “stolen” dogs when in fact they had all died of heatstroke and were discarded in a Abbotsford ditch will face charges of animal cruelty and public mischief.
Delta dog walker Emma Paulsen is facing six charges under the Criminal Code and Prevention Of Cruelty To Animals Act for killing or injuring an animal, causing unnecessary pain or suffering to an animal, failing to provide adequate care for an animal, failing to protect an animal from circumstances that are likely to cause distress, causing or permitting distress, and intents to mislead a peace officer.
If convicted, she will face a maximum fine of $75,000, a prison sentence of up to 5 years, and a ban of owning or having custody of animals for a determined period of time. The charges are recommended by the BC SPCA.
On May 13, Paulsen reported to police that six dogs under her care went missing from her pickup truck after she left her vehicle to use a washroom in Langley. It initiated a major search of the animals but they could not be found.
A week later, she admitted that the dogs had died after she left them in her vehicle on a hot day.
BC SPCA has warned dog owners to not leave their animals in the car under any circumstances. Dogs in particular can quickly overheat as they do not have any sweat glands and depend on panting and paws to release heat. They can suffer irreparable brain damage or death within minutes of being left in an hot environment.
Hearstroke symptoms in dogs include: exaggerated panting (or the sudden stopping of panting), rapid or erratic pulse, salivation, anxious or staring expression, weakness and muscle tremors, lack of coordination, convulsions or vomiting, and collapse.
In June 2014 alone, the BC SPCA responded to 228 calls to rescue dogs who were in distress after they had been left in hot cars by their owners.
Featured Image: RCMP