Local Man Charged With Cruelty for Confining Dog Outdoors With a Washing Machine for ‘Shelter’

For Immediate Release:
November 4, 2021

Nicole Meyer 202-483-7382

Enfield, N.C. – The Enfield Police Department has charged local resident Alonzo Alston with cruelty to animals for depriving a small dog named Cookie of adequate shelter, after PETA fieldworkers found that he was keeping her in a filthy, makeshift outdoor pen, her only “shelter” an old, hollowed-out washing machine. Cookie, who is approximately 8 months old, is currently still on the property, pending the outcome of the court case, and PETA is worried about her well-being.

PETA first reported Cookie’s deplorable living conditions to authorities on September 10 after discovering her confined to the very small pen with no shelter, only mucky rainwater to drink, and only stale bread and rotting meat to eat. Alston was instructed to provide the little dog with adequate shelter, adequate food, and more space. Several days later, he put the washing machine in the pen as “shelter.”

Photos are available here.

“With temperatures dropping, a harsh winter ahead, and no life to speak of, Cookie’s prospects are bleak unless she gets out of there,” says PETA Senior Vice President Daphna Nachminovitch. “PETA thanks the Enfield Police Department for taking action and wants to see this young, vibrant dog given a chance to find a loving indoor home.”

Dogs and cats forced to live outdoors—like those featured in Breaking the Chain, a documentary produced by Oscar winner Anjelica Huston—often go without adequate food, water, shelter, and necessary veterinary care. PETA urges anyone who witnesses neglect to report it to local authorities. If possible, witnesses should take pictures and keep track of the length of time an animal suffers without basic care.

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 on the group’s newsgathering and reporting, 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