In the 1974 claymation classic The Year Without a Santa Claus, two elves ride Vixen, one of Santa’s flying reindeer, to Southtown, USA. The elves disguise Vixen as a dog in order to avoid attracting attention by placing socks over her ears and a belt around her neck like a leash. Vixen becomes ill from the heat in Southtown since she’s just a baby and not accustomed to the drastic temperature change. The elves carry her to a shady resting spot. Moments later, and despite the fact that her “owners” are close by, the local dog catcher puts Vixen in the back of his truck and drives away with her with the elves in pursuit on foot.
At the pound, the dog catcher knows Vixen is sick. She is seen in a cage with a thermometer in her mouth, still wearing her lame dog disguise, and the dog catcher standing nearby. He does not realize she is not a dog. Santa finally comes to reclaim her and it’s then we learn that the elves had been there earlier trying to reclaim Vixen but the dog catcher turned them away because they couldn’t pay the fine. Santa pays the fine and reveals that Vixen is a reindeer. The dog catcher is sufficiently astonished.
It’s just a kids TV show. Prolly nothing to read into it.