Many dog owners were comforting their frightened pets during Fourth of July fireworks, but a Georgia man allegedly terrorized his dog by setting them off on his front porch as the dog cowered for safety. Meanwhile, his 13-year-old daughter recorded the event and posted it on Facebook.
According to WSBTV.com, William Scaffidi claims he didn’t know the dog was there and didn’t intend to harm the four-year-old Husky mix. Whether or not he intended to play a prank on his pooch or was simply ignorant about his actions, you can judge for yourself by watching the video.
The cell phone footage shows Scaffidi lighting fireworks right over his dog, Betty Boop. He then escapes indoors as the sparks fly, the dog runs for cover, and the daughter laughs. A dog’s ears are extremely sensitive, and it must have been a harrowing experience for this poor animal to be so close to explosions.
The video posted on Facebook went viral and caught the attention of Fulton County Animal Services in Northwest Atlanta where Scaffidi resides. He has been charged with animal cruelty and is set to appear in court on July 26. Scaffidi faces a fine of up to $500 and up to 6 months in jail. He could also be forced to surrender Betty Boop and be prevented from owning animals in the County ever again.
Scaffidi told WSBTV.com:
“I admit it was a bad choice of posting it and that’s my mistake. I regret that I did it [lighting the fireworks]… for the fact that the dog was there.”
This isn’t the first time a Facebook post has caught the attention of animal lovers and brought charges against abusers. A woman in North Carolina who boasted on social media about duct taping her dog’s mouth shut was recently found guilty of animal cruelty and forced to pay fees.
It’s sad to see this sweet canine being a victim of a misguided act. The example this man is setting for his daughter, whether or not he intended to harm the dog, is simply disappointing. Teaching kids compassion for animals from a young age is crucial.
Let’s hope the family and others learn from this experience and care for their dogs with kindness in the future.
H/T & Featured image WSBTV.com