On July 15, 2013, the driver of a black Tundra pickup truck with an unsecured dog in the back, slowed for a yellow light and then suddenly gunned the accelerator and threw the dog into a very busy intersection at Blue Oaks Blvd. and Diamond Creek in Roseville, California. (Roseville is a city in Placer County, located in the metropolitan area of Sacramento.)
Witnesses said they were horrified as they saw the dog hit the tailgate, flip over the back of the truck and roll at least a hundred feet after hitting the pavement. Amazingly, and undoubtedly only because of the red light that the Tundra driver had sped up to beat, the dog was not hit by oncoming traffic.
“It only stopped after it a light pole … I thought he was dead … I didn’t think it would make it,” said Jenny Pfitzer, who was driving just behind the truck,
The dog was a small black and white Pit Bull, who was in shock and was skinned badly, but recovered.
Pfitzer told Fox40 News that she tried to follow the truck but lost it. The dog’s owner never reported the incident as an accident nor made any effort to locate the dog at the scene or later after she was taken to the Placer County SPCA.
“We kept waiting for a black truck to come back but he never came back around, which was really weird,” said Pfitzer, who worried that an injured dog—especially a Pit Bull—would not find a home.
But the very friendly, affectionate dog was named Tundra, and her story was told by Placer SPCA. A loving family saw her and adopted her. They renamed her Ruby.
“I’m glad she was adopted, it’s great,” said Pfitzer, who is also a dog owner.
“Her loving and sweet personality helped,” said Placer SPCA CEO Leilani Fratis.
Fratis said she’s frightened every time she sees a dog that’s loose in the bed of pickup truck. She told FOX40 News that even a dog that is attacked in the truck bed on a leash is not safe because they can fall over the side and hang there or can be dragged alongside the moving vehicle.
“The law is clear,” she stated emphatically,” dogs have to be in a container--like a crate--or cross-tethered with two leashes or restraints. One is not enough because a dog can still be thrown from the truck.”
HERE IS THE CALIFORNIA LAW:
Carrying Animal in Motor Truck
23117. (a) No person driving a motor vehicle shall transport any animal in the back of the vehicle in a space intended for any load on the vehicle on a highway unless the space is enclosed or has side and tail racks to a height of at least 46 inches extending vertically from the floor, the vehicle has installed means of preventing the animal from being discharged, or the animal is cross tethered to the vehicle, or is protected by a secured container or cage, in a manner which will prevent the animal from being thrown, falling, or jumping from the vehicle. (Exceptions are listed.)