© Desiree Finhert - METRO HALIFAX
Mic Mac Mall
In light of recent Halifax police reports of too many dogs being left in hot cars, Mic Mac Mall is taking the proactive approach to spot pooches in distress.
The Dartmouth mall has hired what its dubbed Pet Patrol people to stroll its parking lot on weekends looking for any animals in distress.
“Essentially, it’s a monitoring program to make sure that no pet is left unattended,” general manager Chris Keillor said. “It really comes down to people shouldn’t be leaving pets unattended on hot days.”
Pet Patrol started last Saturday and is to continue each weekend in the summer until the weather gets cooler in the fall. During the week, the regular security staff monitor the mall’s parking lot.
Keillor didn’t know if there were any incidents of dogs trapped in vehicles over the weekend..
“We page the owners of the car,” he said of how the system works “That’s the first thing. We call police if we have to.”
The added security is getting positive response from shoppers and dog owners.
“I think it’s a great idea because it rescues these animals who shouldn’t have been left there in the first place,” said Donna MacDonald outside of Target. “I have two dogs myself and I wouldn’t do that to them. I don’t think that’s the place. Leave your dogs at home if you’re going shopping.”
Clyde Wareham said he sees dogs and cats left in cars all the time with the windows open about an inch.
“They should take the dog or cat in with them, or leave it at home, or put it in a kennel,” Wareham said as he waited outside in his car in the Mic Mac Mall parking lot.
Halifax Regional Police also approve of the pooch patrol.
“Anything that can prevent a potentially fatal outcome, for pets and children, it’s a good step in the right direction,” said spokesman Const. Pierre Bourdages.
“At least we know we have someone there with eyes on cars. If there is a need for police than we would be called.”