Canberra woman receives angry letter for leaving dog in car

Canberra local Haley Austine has revealed why she had to leave her rescue dog, Drake, in the car while she ducked into the supermarket for five minutes.

An angry letter has left a Canberra local rattled after she found it attached to her car windscreen on her return from a five-minute trip to the supermarket.

Haley Austine returned to a nasty note telling her she didn’t deserve her dog, Drake, who she left in the car while she ducked into Westfield Belconnen mall for baby formula.

“I have reported you for leaving the dog unattended inside the car. I also have pictures. You do not deserve a good dog like this,” the handwritten letter, planted on Thursday morning, read.

What its author didn’t know, however, was that Drake suffers from a combination of severe medical conditions that makes it unsafe for him to be left alone longer than 20 minutes.

The four-year-old American Staffordshire terrier, which Ms Austine rescued in April, lives with severe anxiety and seizures, which she said were impossible to predict.

“Drake will have epileptic fits and foam at the mouth, and even sometimes he defecates depending on the seriousness,” Ms. Austine told news.com.au.

“His seizures last anywhere from 10 minutes to 15 minutes, and even then, he can’t come to properly for another 30 minutes after that.”

She added the seizures happened about once a month, but there were “no telltale signs” of warning.

Being a special needs dog, Ms. Austine said Drake required full-time supervision.

“Drake doesn’t leave my side, nor am I game enough to test the theory. He is such a beautiful natured very stubborn boy who wouldn’t hurt a fly. He just needs another chance at life,” she said.

While she appreciated the letter’s author hoped to help Drake, she wished they had gone about the situation differently.

“I just wish you had a conversation with me to get to know him and the situation before judging me so bad,” she said.

“I don’t want to leave my house again.”

Ms. Austine was midway through having Drake registered as a support animal but said anxiety-triggered bowel accidents had made the process difficult.


Effie F. Bush is a 27-year-old junior manager who enjoys praying, social card games, and listening to music. She is inspiring and brave, but can also be very disloyal and a bit unfriendly.She is an Australian Christian who defines herself as straight. She has a post-graduate degree in business studies.

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