PETA is giving a Compassionate Action Award to Mark Greenaway, a Gatineau, Ontario, resident who rescued a dog from a burning building. Greenaway isn't a firefighter, but when he saw smoke coming from a duplex, he risked his own life by running into both burning apartments to save anyone who might be inside. In the second apartment, he found a dog trapped inside a locked cage. He ripped off the front of the cage and carried the dog to safety.
This dog's close call serves as a reminder of the dangers of crating. A crated dog is powerless to escape disasters like fires or floods (PETA found many dogs drowned in their cages in the wake of Hurricane Katrina), and crating also denies dogs the opportunity to engage in normal activities such as walking around, stretching out to relax, and looking out windows.
If you are tempted to crate your dog as a form of house training, please keep in mind that puppies don't develop bladder control until they are 6 months old, so crating will not necessarily prevent "accidents." Please consider alternatives to crating such as dog-training classes, doggie day care, a dog walker, or a dog door that leads to a fenced yard. It's also a great idea to post a sticker on your window in case of a fire or other emergency to let people know that you have companion animals in your home.
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Written by Michelle Sherrow