Texas woman arrested after roommate’s dog dies from dehydration

Published: Jul. 17, 2022 at 5:40 AM AKDT
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COLLEGE STATION, Texas (KBTX/Gray News) - A Texas woman is facing animal cruelty charges after her roommate’s dog died from complications from dehydration, lack of food ingestion and extreme temperatures.

Jacie Renee Martino, 19, is charged with cruelty to non-livestock animals, KBTX reported.

A concerned neighbor called the College Station Police Department to report her neighbor’s dog was dead in the backyard. When officers arrived, they observed the deceased dog through the fence. They say the dog was tethered to a post and had no water, food, or shelter. The responding officer noted the temperature was 102 degrees.

Officials made contact with the dog’s owner over the phone, where she told officers she was out of town and left her dog in the care of her roommate for the last six days. The dog’s owner gave consent to officials to enter the backyard where they took possession of the dog and transported it to Aggieland Humane Society for an examination.

Officers made contact with Martino at her place of employment where she admitted to taking care of the dog the week before. She told officials that the dog was tethered to a post in the backyard when she went to work on June 22. Martino told officers when she came home on June 26, she found the dog deceased in the backyard.

Officials continued to investigate as they waited for the results of the necropsy examination which came back on July 1.

“There is evidence of severe dehydration and lack of food ingestion. Dehydration can result from not drinking enough fluid or by fluid loss from vomiting, diarrhea, and environmental factors,” the report said.

Officials filed an arrest warrant on July 13 where Martino was subsequently arrested and booked into the Brazos County Jail on a $5,000 bond.

Martino posted bond the same day of arrest.

Animal experts and advocates are stressing the importance of taking care of your pets during extreme weather conditions.

A Texas Law recently went into effect that makes it a crime to leave dogs outdoors with no shelter and clean water in extreme weather conditions, including heatwaves.

Senate Bill 5, known as the “Safe Outdoor Dogs” Act outlaws the use of chain tethers on dogs outside. It also requires owners to have the proper shelter from extreme weather and water to drink for their dogs. The new law also eliminates the 24-hour waiting period for law enforcement officers to intervene in cases where dogs are at risk of inhumane treatment.

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