SAN FRANCISCO -- The San Francisco Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is issuing a warning to people to keep their dogs off of escalators because of a number of recent injuries to the animals' paws.
The two SF SPCA animal hospitals in the city's Mission District and Pacific Heights neighborhood regularly receive emergency visits for injuries to dogs from escalators.
Krista Maloney, a spokeswoman for the nonprofit, said at least a few cases have come in to the hospitals each month recently.
Dogs' paws can get caught between the moving escalator steps and they often lose part of their toes.
Animal guardians are advised to carry their dogs on escalators or to use stairs or an elevator instead.
"Every month we see far too many escalator-related emergencies," SF SPCA co-president Dr. Jennifer Scarlett said in a statement.
"Most of these cases involve small dogs riding escalators at BART stations or shopping malls, but dogs of all sizes are vulnerable. These injuries are very painful and expensive to treat, but the good news is that they're completely preventable," Scarlett said.
More information on the SF SPCA and the services the nonprofit offers can be found online at www.sfspca.org.