Kaley Cuoco apologizes after 4th of July dog photo invokes American ire

WATCH: The 'Big Bang Theory' actress posted a photo of her three pets decked out in stars-and-stripes attire, which sparked some angry comments from her followers.

Kaley Cuoco has apologized after sharing a picture of her dogs and an American flag that “caused a lot of controversy” over the Independence Day long weekend in the U.S.

The Big Bang Theory actress posted a photo of her three pets decked out in stars-and-stripes attire with the caption, “Thank you @the_pet_handler for taking care of the squad while I’m out of town! 4th of July pups!”

The only problem was two of the animals were sitting directly on an American flag that was splayed out on the ground. A screenshot of the now-deleted post is below.

kaley cuoco flag instagram

Several of the 30-year-old’s followers angrily pointed out that defacing, damaging or letting a country’s flag touch the ground is widely seen as a sign of disrespect.

In the shot above, one person can be seen saying “I believe in the right to burn the flag in protest as long as it is in context, that’s why so many give their lives for freedom. But this is not that, this is simply disrespectful. That’s a flag. A symbol of what people have sacrificed.”

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Another said, “et me remind you that lot of blood was sacrificed just to keep the flag high… If you have a lil bit of respect for it you should not only remove this picture but also apologize to the people whose feeling must have got hurt.”

In response to the controversy, Cuoco shared an image of an American flag in the shape of a heart on Instagram on Tuesday alongside a lengthy apology.

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“I would like to comment on a photo I posted yesterday, that has caused lots of controversy,” she wrote. “First off, please know, I have the utmost respect for my country. I am a proud American in every sense of the word. I understand the American flag stands for our freedom and represents American heroes, past and present.”

She went on to say, “Yesterday I made a mistake by posting the picture that was taken of my sweet dogs posing on an American flag. I sincerely apologize to anyone that has been offended by my previous post. This is no way reflects my feelings toward what the American flag represents. Living in the public eye, can be extremely difficult at times. Every mistake and every imperfection is amplified. I am not perfect. I am a proud American, today, tomorrow, always.”

View this post on Instagram

I would like to comment on a photo I posted yesterday , that has caused lots of controversy. First off, please know, I have the utmost respect for my country. I am a proud American in every sense of the word. I understand the American flag stands for our freedom and represents American heroes , past and present. Yesterday I made a mistake by posting the picture that was taken of my sweet dogs posing on an American flag. I sincerely apologize to anyone that has been offended by my previous post. This is no way reflects my feelings toward what the American flag represents. Living in the public eye, can be extremely difficult at times. Every mistake and every imperfection is amplified. I am not perfect. I am a proud American, today, tomorrow, always. 💗

A post shared by Kaley Cuoco (@kaleycuoco) on

 

In the U.S., there are strict laws that dictate how the American flag should be displayed or used. According to the U.S. Code (which is developed by the Office of the Law Revision Counsel of the United States), the stars and stripes should “never touch anything beneath it, such as the ground, the floor, water or merchandise.” It should also never be “carried flat or horizontally, but always aloft and free.”

Here in Canada, the official government rules dictate the maple leaf “should not be subjected to indignity.” The flag should not be used “as a table or seat cover, as a masking for boxes or as a barrier on a stage or platform.” Nothing should be pinned or sewn to it either.

© 2016 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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