Heat Kills: Chained Dog’s Death Brings Urgent PETA PSA Blitz

For Immediate Release:
June 29, 2021

Nicole Meyer 202-483-7382

Norfolk, Va. – After a PETA fieldworker found a female pit bull named Star dead of heatstroke at a Halifax County residence last month, the animal rights group is running a flurry of urgent public service announcements (PSAs) on networks throughout North Carolina urging immediate action for dogs: “Please report dogs without access to shade or drinkable water,” the 30-second PSA states. “Their lives are in your hands.” The spot is airing all week long on WCWG (CW) and WXII (NBC) in Greensboro, WCTI (ABC) in New Bern, WTVD (ABC) in Fayetteville, WLOS (ABC) in Asheville, and WWAY (ABC) in Wilmington.

PETA’s fieldworkers have found many dogs suffering in the heat already this year, including in northeastern North Carolina, and this weekend, temperatures are expected to reach the mid-90s.

“This sweet dog essentially broiled to death on a chain, without a drop of water or an inch of shade nearby,” says PETA Senior Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch. “We hope PETA’s PSA will prevent other dogs from being left outside in the scorching summer heat to suffer and even die.” 

PETA points out that as temperatures rise, “backyard dogs” can experience multisystem organ failure, brain damage, and death within minutes. In cases in which authorities are unresponsive, the group recommends that witnesses call 757-622-PETA. 

Leaving dogs outside in the heat is illegal and punishable by fines and jail time. Star’s case is under investigation by the Halifax County Sheriff’s Office. Photos of Star before and after her death are available here. (Warning: graphic images)

Earlier this month, PETA’s PSA ran on WBTV (CBS) and WJZY (FOX) in Charlotte, WGHP (FOX) in Greensboro, and WRAL (NBC) and WRAZ (FOX) in Raleigh-Durham as well as on WAVY (NBC) and WTKR (CBS) in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to abuse in any way”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind