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A life or death issue
Stay tuned for a brand new My Dog Is Cool website launching this summer! To stay connected about keeping dogs cool, email

The following reports are but a fraction of the hundreds, even thousands, of instances where every year dogs are left in parked cars to die. A lucky few survive. (One county animal shelter reports getting three to six heat-related calls of animal cruelty or animals in distress each day.) Also, many young children die as a result of being left in parked cars in the summertime. One website tracked 16 toddlers and infants dead in 2008 in the span of only two months.


7/22/2011, Sacramento, CA

Woman arrested after puppy dies in hot car

A Rancho Cordova woman has been charged with animal cruelty for allegedly leaving her dog inside a hot car, fatally dehydrating him. The Folsom Police Department said officers found a 6 month old Pomeranian/Shih Tzu mix puppy, Gizmo, lying on the rear floorboard of a black Honda parked in a WinCo lot around 5 p.m. Wednesday. (CBS Sacramento)

7/18/2011, Johnson City, TN

Dog dies in hot car, owner speaks out

Last Thursday, Brandon Kincaid left his dog in the car while he ran an errand. Even though the windows were down, the dog died of heat exhaustion. (

6/22/2011, Ontario, CA

Dog left in hot car dies while owner shops

Police say a 19-year-old woman is facing animal cruelty charges for causing her dog's death by leaving it in a hot car while she went shopping. (KABC-TV)

4/11/2011, Altamonte Springs, FL

Two pugs left in hot car in mall parking lot

Two women face animal-cruelty charges, accused of leaving two dogs inside a hot car in the Altamonte Mall parking lot last weekend. Bridget Maria Casiano, 42, and Nancy W. Charrez, 47, both of Port St. Lucie, each are accused of two counts of animal cruelty by tormenting, depriving, mutilating or killing animals. (Orlando Sentinel)


8/31/2010, Washington, DC

Dog dies inside hot car

A tourist from Michigan was arrested on animal cruelty charges Monday after leaving his two dogs inside a scorching minivan parked near the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in the District. Rosie, an 8-year-old Chihuahua, died of heat stress after being inside the minivan for more than an hour. (Washington Post)

8/9/2010, Salisbury, MD

Woman left six dogs locked in a hot car

Salisbury police said a man and a woman left six dogs locked in a hot car for more than three hours. One dog died. Police were called to a vehicle at the Centre Mall in Salisbury Sunday afternoon. The six dogs, who appeared to be in distress from the heat, were in the car with the windows down only one inch. Police entered the car and found the temperature to be more than 105 degrees. (WBALTV.COM)

8/5/2010, Austin, TX

Dog dies in hot car; owner charged

An Austin man was arrested on Tuesday for reportedly leaving his dog in a hot car while he shopped in an electronics store, killing the 2-year-old dog named Stedman. (Austin News)

8/3/2010, Fort Myers, FL

Dog dies after it was left in car for more than two hours

Leaving a dog alone in the car often has deadly consequences, especially in hot and sunny Florida. A family left its small poodle mix in the car outside HealthPark Medical Center in Fort Myers on Monday and it died. Someone called Lee County Domestic Animal Services to report seeing the animal in the car, but although the officer arrived in minutes, they were unable to save the animal. (Naples News)

8/2/2010, Springfield, MA

One of Two Dogs in Hot Truck Dies

A West Springfield man is facing animal cruelty charges after police say he left his two dogs in a hot pick up truck while shopping at the Holyoke Mall. The photos of the incident released by Holyoke Police might bring any dog lover to tears. An old yellow lab and a little corgi cross left in the back of a sealed pickup truck while police say their owner went shopping for nearly two hours at the Holyoke mall. Two Sears employees saw the dogs in distress, opened the truck, and poured cool water on the dogs until Holyoke Police arrived. Officers say the lab was unresponsive and was suffering from seizures due to the extreme heat. (CBS 3 Springfield)

7/8/2010, Yorktown Heights, NY

Dog dies in hot car while owner swims

A New York City man has been charged with letting his dog die in a 140-degree car while he went out for a swim. Ken Ross, chief investigator for the SPCA in Westchester County, said that Heriberto Palacio had gone for a swim at Franklin D. Roosevelt State Park in Yorktown Heights on Monday. Temperatures were in the 90s outside. Ross says that 41-year-old Palacio left two windows open about 2 inches and left his 6-pound Maltese dog in the parked van. (

7/7/2010, Janesville, WI

Dog left in car dies after four hours in the heat

A Wisconsin woman faces charges after her dog was left to die inside her hot car. Police say Anisha Butalla, 24, of Wausau, left her 2-year-old pit bull in her car at the Wal-Mart parking lot at 2785 Milwaukee Road while she attended a court matter in Janesville. The dog was locked in the car without sufficient ventilation on Tuesday, during the heat of the day when the temperature was 86 degrees outside. (WREX Rockford)

7/6/2010, Frederick, MD

Woman charged with leaving dog in hot car while she shopped

Before she left the state of Washington to relocate to West Virginia, Cathryn Cordyack Washington had a veterinarian give her 14-year-old dog the OK to fly. For Delta, a yellow Labrador retriever, the cross-country airplane trip wasn't a problem. It was the hot car she was left in after arriving that killed her. According to charging documents filed in Frederick County District Court, Washington's retriever died of heart failure brought on by the stress of hyperthermia, suffered July 6 in the Costco parking lot as her owner shopped.(

6/28/2010, Scottsdale, AZ

Harkins Theatres owner cited for leaving dog in hot car

Dan Harkins, owner of Harkins Theatres, was cited for animal neglect Saturday after authorities said he left his dog in his car for more than three hours, according to the Scottsdale Police Department. An officer was flagged down by someone who noticed a 5-year-old female corgi alone in a white 2008 BMW sedan, which was parked at the Harkins Shea 14 movie theater in the 7300 block of East Shea Boulevard, according to police records. (

6/28/2010, Sacramento, CA

Dog left in hot car at Arden Fair Mall

A Cavalier King Charles Spaniel was left in a hot car at Arden Fair Mall while the owner was shopping inside Sunday. Witnesses saw the dog in the vehicle and called police, animal control and mall security. (ABC News 10)

6/22/2010, Memphis, TN

Dog dies days after being left inside hot car

A dog that was left inside a hot car for hours over the weekend died late Monday night. Monday evening, Coco, a one-year-old pit pull, passed away after spending the day receiving IV's and emergency care. Gregory Fisher and Amanda Lillard are behind bars charged with animal cruelty, after Coco sat in a hot car for hours on Saturday. (Action News 5 -

6/22/2010, Henryville, IN

Marriage spat may have led to death of dog in hot car

A southern Indiana woman is under investigation after being accused of leaving her estranged husband's dog in a sweltering car and not telling him about it for 90 minutes. A police report shows the dog was found motionless, curled in a ball in the car. That dog - Saber - later died, despite the efforts of an EMT to save his life. (NBC Wave 3 News)

6/16/2010, Stillwater, OK

Man cited for animal cruelty for leaving dog in hot truck

Stillwater police cited a man for animal cruelty Sunday after he left a dog in a parked car.

The man told police he was shopping inside a store for about 10 minutes, said Capt. Randy Dickerson. (News Press)

6/6/10, Grand Junction, CO

Dog left in hot car at Wal-Mart, owner ticketed

A dog was left in a hot car Saturday evening and now its owner is facing charges. The dog was alone in the hot sun in the Rimrock Wal-Mart parking lot. Officials took a temperature reading in the car and found that it was 122 to 123 degrees inside. (NBC 11 News)

05/17/10, St. Louis, MO

Evansville Man Accused of Leaving Dog in Hot Car

Evansville Police said John T. Heldreth was arrested on Friday and charged with one count of animal cruelty. Police said a small Boston terrier was found just before 3:00 PM Friday inside a white truck parked at St. Mary's Hospital. According to police documents, the dog was panting hard and was wet from sweating. They said the passenger side window was cracked a little but rain vents over the window was preventing air from getting into the truck.(ABC News 25)

5/24/10, Rochester, MN

Dog dies in hot vehicle, owner shares his side of story

A rottweiler was left inside a vehicle Saturday afternoon and died of heat exhaustion. The owner said he loved the dog and never intended something like this to happen. (ABC WXOW 19)

04/14/10, St. Louis, MO

Dog rescued from hot car at the Saint Louis Zoo

A warning from the Humane Society of Missouri: what may feel like perfect temperatures outside can build to dangerous levels inside a vehicle.

Investigators rescued two pets from hot cars Wednesday -- one of the rescues was at the St. Louis Zoo. Charges could be filed for endangering the animals in both cars. (

03/10/10, Tampa, FL

Dog left in hot car while family visited Busch Gardens

Down from Illinois on spring break, Police say Marius Molnar left a dog inside his SUV while he visited Busch Gardens. An officer working extra duty spotted the car in the Busch Gardens parking lot with the dog inside. Hillsborough County Animal Services investigated and said the inside temperature of the vehicle was 90 degrees. (ABC Action News)


09/24/09, Downey, CA

Puppy rescued from hot car finds new family

Yo quiero una casa! That was the message being sent out by the Southeast Area Animal Control Authority for a 3-month-old Chihuahua named Bella, rescued this month after she was left in a hot car. (Press-Telegram)

08/21/09, South Padre Island, TX

Man Arrested For Leaving Dog in Hot Car

A Keller, Texas man is behind bars charged with animal cruelty after leaving his dog in a sweltering car in the Schlitterbahn parking lot. (

08/21/09, Bainbridge Island, WA

Dog dies in hot car on Bainbridge; second case in week

A black lab dog died Thursday after being left for several hours in a hot car on Bainbridge Island. It's the second dog to die in a hot car in the area in the past week. (The Seattle Times)

08/17/09, Seattle, WA

One dog dies, others rescued from hot cars

Seattle city officials said animal control officers responded to at least four separate reports of animals left in hot vehicles on Sunday. One pit bull died while left in a car parked on Western Avenue. A police report said officers found the pit bull in a hot car with scratch marks throughout the interior "as if the animal was trying to escape" along with saliva, blood and vomit. (

08/13/09, Altoona, IA

Owner Charged For Leaving Pet In Hot Car

An animal owner is facing charges after leaving his dog in a hot car outside Adventureland Park, the third such incident reported on Monday alone. Altoona police are charging a Waterloo man, Lawrence Ray, with animal cruelty for leaving his dog in his car at the park. Officials said pet owners could face a $100 fine or up to a $1,000 and 30 days in jail if the pet is seriously injured or dies. (KCCI)

08/12/09, Schaumburg, IL

Woman Cited After Dog Dies In Car On Hot Day

An Iowa woman was charged with cruel treatment of animals after she left her dog in a hot car Saturday, killing the 4-year-old Pug. (CBS2 News)

08/11/09, Eastpointe, MI

Dogs Die After Being Left In Hot Car

Investigators plan to interview the groomer who left the two dogs in the back of the capped pickup outside Eastpointe Animal Hospital, as well as any possible witnesses in that area during the early afternoon hours of last Friday. The hope is that the media coverage will bring someone forward. (WWJ News Radio)

08/5/09, Tyler, TX

Hot Car Puts Pet Puppy At Risk

A crowd gathered Tuesday around a small black passenger car parked in front of Ross Department Store on South Broadway Avenue as they watched firefighters pull the lone occupant from the scorching interior. With the passenger firmly in his arms, Tyler firefighter Justin Dominy safely lifted the young pooch out of the car to the sound of cheers. (Tyler Morning Telegraph)

07/27/09, South Texas, TX

Woman loses custody of dog

A municipal court judge Monday told a pet owner she's very lucky her dog didn't die in a hot vehicle..Calling the owner's choice to leave the dog locked in the car as cruel confinement. And, as a result that same judge upheld an animal seizure warrant and awarded custody of the pup to the city....Meaning soon it'll be available for adoption. Three news has been following this story. (KIIITV News)

07/27/09, Orange County, CA

Dalmatian apparently OK after stint in hot car

Brea police issued a citation to a Fullerton man for confining his Dalmatian inside a parked, dark blue SUV while shopping in Wal-Mart over the weekend, Sgt. Bill Smyser said. (The Orange County Register)

07/16/09, Denver, CO

Terrier dies in hot car as "Idol" hopeful auditions in Denver

A small terrier died in a hot car while its owner's girlfriend waited in a long line to audition for "American Idol" at Invesco Field at Mile High Stadium.

Quincy Vanderbilt, 24, was served Tuesday with a misdemeanor summons for animal cruelty, said Lynn Kimbrough, spokeswoman for the Denver district attorney's office.(

07/03/09, Nottingham, UK

Flowers left for dead police dogs

Flowers have been laid at a special memorial site at Nottingham Police Headquarters for two German Shepherd police dogs found dead in a hot car. The animals were found dead in the private vehicle outside the Nottingham headquarters on Tuesday, one of the hottest days of the year. (BBC News)

06/28/09, Spokane, WA

Man held on cruelty charge in Spokane after leaving dog in car

A 1-year-old black Labrador retriever pulled Friday from a car with no windows open at the Spokane Valley Mall has died.

Charles M. Eschenbacher, 31, the dog's owner, was booked into Spokane County Jail on Friday, charged with felony animal cruelty. He is being held in lieu of $5,000 bail and also has been charged with a misdemeanor related to confining or transporting an animal unsafely. (The Spokesman-Review)

06/25/09, Arnold, MO

7 show dogs die after being left in van

Seven high-priced show dogs, including a top Akita, died after being left by their handler in a hot van for more than five hours, police near St. Louis said. (

06/23/09, Wagoner, OK

Woman Arrested After Dog Died In Hot Car

A woman has been arrested on a complaint of animal cruelty. Her dog died after officials say it was left inside a hot car at Toppers Recreational Area in Wagoner County. It can happen so fast. In this case, it was a rat terrier that was left inside, locked in a hot car for at least three hours. The owner was on a boat on the lake. Nicole Zipfel posted bond Tuesday, two days after being arrested after lakegoers complained about a small dog, desperately trying to get out of a locked, hot car. (

06/17/09, Greenville, SC

Sixth dog dies after being left in hot car in Greenville

The sixth and last dog that was left in a hot SUV in Greenville died Wednesday morning according to Greenville Police.

The dog — named "Izzie" by workers at the Greenville Animal Shelter — was in poor health and suffered injuries to her organs following the incident. (WCBD News)

06/15/09, Grandville, MI

Charges likely for woman whose dog died from heat in car parked at RiverTown mall

Charges are pending against the owner of a small dog that died Sunday after being left in a car outside of RiverTown Crossings, police said.

Firefighters got into the car and provided oxygen and water from a syringe to the Chihuahua, but it died at the scene, Grandville Detective Sgt. Renee Veldman said. (The Grand Rapids Press)

06/03/09, Wilmington, DE

Police: Woman left dog inside hot car for 6 hours

A Delaware woman faces criminal charges after Beckley police say she left her dog for six hours inside a hot car, parked across the street from police headquarters.

Amy Elizabeth Marlow, 23, of Wilmington, Del., was charged with misdemeanor cruelty to animals, Police Chief Tim Deems said. She was given a citation to appear in Beckley Municipal Court. (The Register Herald)

05/24/09, Lexington County, SC

Man Convicted of Leaving Puppy in Hot Car

A judge found a 19-year-old man guilty, after the man left a puppy in his car for more than 30 minutes.

Witnesses say Joseph Caleb Bannister left a small puppy inside his vehicle for more than a half-hour while he visited a cup cake restaurant in Lexington. (

05/21/09, Keansburg, NJ

Man fined $500 for leaving dog in hot car

Gerard Pagnotta, 42, of the Parlin section of Sayreville, pleaded guilty to leaving an animal unattended in a motor vehicle in inhumane conditions, and he was ordered by Keansburg Municipal Court Judge Michael Pugliese to pay a $500 fine, said Victor "Buddy" Amato, the police chief of the Monmouth County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.(

05/19/09, Boynton Beach, FL

Woman arrested for leaving dog in hot car

A Loxahatchee woman is facing felony animal cruelty charges after police say she left her dog in her car for hours while she shopped at the Boynton Beach Mall.

Police received a call from a good Samaritan who saw a small brown dog inside a black 2009 Mazda which was hot to the touch with all windows rolled up. (

05/14/09, Longview, TX

Dog dies from heat inside parked car

Animal cruelty charges are pending against a woman after her dog died from excessive heat exposure while left in the parked vehicle, said Geoff Heinicke, Longview Environmental Health Manager.

A person in the Longview Mall parking lot on Saturday saw a large dog in distress inside a parked vehicle and contacted mall security, according to a statement from the city. The animal was dead by the time security reached the vehicle. Longview police and an animal control officer responded to the mall and located the vehicle's owner. (Longview News Journal)

05/07/09, Tampa, FL

Woman left dog in hot car at Ikea grand opening

The first sign of trouble at the Ikea store in East Tampa surfaced during its grand opening on Wednesday, when a customer was arrested on animal cruelty charges. It was the second time in 1 1/2 years she was charged with the same offense under similar circumstances.

Tampa police charged Amy Chantarak, 19, about 2 p.m. Wednesday after a Tampa police officer working at the store's opening was told by a passer-by that a dog was locked in a car.(Tampa Bay Online)

04/23/09, Tualatin, OR

Dog dies in hot car outside Bridgeport Village mall

The warm weather early this week claimed the life of a dog that was left in a car outside an upscale shopping mall.

Tualatin Police say 55-year-old Linda Rae Daniels of Cottage Grove took her pet pug to Bridgeport Village on Monday. Daniels parked her sport utility vehicle in the direct sunlight on an 80-degree day, leaving the dog inside with the back windows rolled down a few inches.(

03/17/09, Edmonton, Canada

Edmonton judge fines man $1,500 for leaving dog in hot car

A man from Hay River, N.W.T. has been convicted of causing an animal distress under Alberta's Animal Protection Act.

Provincial Court Judge Darryl Ackroyd fined Gregory McMeekin $1,500 Tuesday morning in Edmonton after learning that McMeekin left Dreyfus, his golden retriever, in a hot car for more than 2 1/2 hours in June 2006. (Edmonton Journal)


10/24/08, San Rafael, CA

A man on trial for stealing a Porsche was out on bail during jury deliberation when he learned that some Yorkshire terrier-Maltese hybrid puppies escaped from his Lexus SUV in the courthouse parking lot. When he dashed back to the SUV, keys in hand and expressing concern for the dogs, deputies arrested him: The SUV had been stolen in San Francisco. The escaped dogs, and a few newborns still in the SUV, were OK and were taken to a Humane Society shelter. It was unclear whose dogs they were, but they did not belong to the SUV owner. Later that afternoon, the jurors � unaware of what they had missed while deliberating � returned with a guilty verdict. On Monday, 10/27/08, the man was arraigned on new charges: possessing a stolen car (and a laptop computer also found in the SUV), plus animal cruelty. His bail was raised from $10,000 to $250,000. His attorney declined to comment. (San Francisco Chronicle)

09/03/08, Clay County, FL

When an air conditioner repairman left a fence open, Diamond, a Rottweiler, got loose. Clay County Animal Control captured Diamond, but the animal control officer left Diamond in the truck for as long as 60 minutes. When the officer reached Animal Control, he left the truck with four animals (including Diamond) inside for a meeting that lasted about 15 minutes. By the time the officer unloaded Diamond, she was dead. Animal Control trucks do not have air conditioning for the animals. The Clay County Sheriff's Office is investigating Animal Control for animal cruelty and neglect. (First Coast News)

09/01/08, Nahant, MA

State Police will summons a Salem man to court for animal cruelty after he allegedly left his Pomeranian dog inside a locked car on Labor Day in the Long Beach parking lot. The man is accused of leaving his dog Flippy inside his subcompact car around 11:30am as the temperature reached 85 degrees. The car was about to be towed for being illegally parked when the towtruck driver noticed a dog in the vehicle. All the car's windows were up and the doors locked. Troopers said the dog was fine, but took him for a short time. However, the dog was returned to the man when he called police to report his car was missing. Police said the man had left his car to go to the beach. (The Daily Item)

09/01/08, Gurnee, IL

A Chicago woman was charged with animal cruelty and neglect after leaving her dog in a car in the parking lot at Six Flags Great America in Gurnee without food or water for about six hours Monday, when temperatures reached the mid-80s. Six Flags security found the female beagle � who appeared to be in distress because of the heat � just before 4:00pm. The car had one rear window cracked open, and Gurnee police determined the dog, who was panting and barking, was in danger and removed it from the vehicle, police said. Police took the dog to the Gurnee Police Department kennel and left a tag on the vehicle telling the owner where to retrieve the animal. The owner arrived about 6:45pm and was issued a citation for animal cruelty and neglect before the dog was given back to her. (Chicago Tribune)

09/01/08,Lakewood, CO

A report of a dog left in a hot car brought police to a thrift store at 12:45pm. The officer observed a brown Chevy with a small dog lying on the driver's side floorboard panting heavily. The outside temperature was 83 degrees and the officer used her laser thermometer to determine that it was 110 degrees inside the car. The officer went inside the thrift store to have the owner paged. When the owner arrived, she said she had only been inside the store about 15 minutes, although police received the call about the dog a half hour earlier. The officer told the woman to cool off the dog by pouring water on it. The woman was issued a summons on suspicion of animal neglect. (

08/30/08, Brighton, CO

A woman was issued a summons for animal cruelty after her dog was found left inside a hot car. Officers were called to the parking lot of a Wal-Mart about 3:30pm on a report of a dog in a vehicle. The responding officer noted the temperature at 86 degrees when he was called to the scene. Witnesses at the scene led the officer to the car and estimated the animal was in the car for about an hour. The officer found the small black dog, possibly a Shih Tzu, sitting behind the driver's seat of the silver Mercedes SUV. The dog was responsive to the officer but panting. One of the witnesses went inside the store to page the owner of the vehicle. A short time later, a young girl came out to unlock the vehicle and apologized to the officer for leaving the dog in the car. She said her aunt was still in the store and would be out when she finished checking out. When the 28-year-old woman came out, she was, allegedly, argumentative. She told the officer the dog was "fine" and accused the officer of lying about how long it had been in the vehicle. She also told the officer her husband was a police officer in another jurisdiction. The officer took the woman's driver's license to issue a summons, and she said she would leave without it. The officer reminded her she would be leaving without her driver's license. After accepting her summonses for animal cruelty-neglect, the woman reminded the officer her husband was also a police officer. The responding officer told the woman she should have known better, as a police officer's spouse, than to leave a dog in a hot, unventilated car. The woman then scolded the officer with, "How dare you throw that in my face." (Brighton Standard Blade)

08/20/08, Corpus Christi, TX

Around noon, some concerned shoppers noticed a French Bulldog locked in a car parked outside the Padre Staples Mall. A woman waited 15 minutes before calling officers because she wanted to wait to see if the owners would come out. When police arrived they found the dog with no water, and the windows rolled up. The decision was made to break the passenger side window. The dog "couldn't catch his breath," said the woman. "He was stumbling inside the car. He fell over the parking brake and landed in the floor board." The owners of the dog, a couple from San Antonio, were very upset the window was busted. The woman said the dog wasn't in the car any longer than 30 minutes. Those who called 911 say it appeared the dog had been left there for a while. The dog, Bobby, is expected to make a full recovery. The couple won't get their dog back from the city's animal care services for at least 10 days, when an administrative hearing is scheduled. (KIII-TV Corpus Christi)

08/15/08, Chandler, AZ

A 27-year-old man will probably be charged with one count of cruelty to animals, a misdemeanor, after leaving Brother, his one-year-old Puggle (a pug/beagle mix), inside his SUV with the two front windows partially down for at least 35 minutes while he went inside a mall to get something to eat. A woman parked nearby heard the dog barking in the car and called police. Police took the dog, named Brother, to an animal hospital, where he received fluid through an IV. An officer wrote in his police report that when asked why he had left the dog inside the vehicle, the man "stated he was hungry and had to run into the mall to get something to eat. He further related he left the dog in the vehicle because he obviously couldn't take it into the mall." The man told police he didn't know how long he was in the mall and didn't realize how hot it was outside. The National Weather Service reported a high of 100 degrees in Chandler that day. Police say the man's was criminal because it was intentional. "He knows that he left the dog in there and he knew that the dog was in there and took the risk of harm being done to the dog anyway," said a police spokesman. "That's reckless." (East Valley Tribune)

08/15/08, Penzance, Cornwall, UK

Two terriers left in a locked car in direct sunlight in a market parking lot prompted quick action from nearby shopkeepers and questions about police handling of the situation. "A crowd gathered and we tried to spray water through a slit in the sun roof but it didn't work. Thankfully the man from the barber's shop had the presence of mind to put a white sheet over the car to cool the inside of the car," said a witness. A district councillor went to the police for help but was told, that despite having powers of forced entry, the police could only use that if it was a dangerous dog. Fortunately, the dogs' caretakers returned before drastic action was needed. (this is

08/04/08, Albany, NY

A 25-year-old woman was arrested on a misdemeanor count of cruelty to animals after she left a Pekingese dog in a 2001 Kia Sophia at the state Human Resources complex. Officers found the dog in distress in the car, which had its windows up. They took the dog to a local veterinarian to be checked, but it died upon arrival at the facility. "The officers believe the dog had been in the car with the windows up for about an hour Monday afternoon," said a police spokesperson. "It was just too hot for it inside the car." With temperatures hovering around the century mark and humidity making for sweltering 105-plus-degree heat indexes, police caution the public against leaving any living organism � dog, cat or human � inside a car alone during the daylight hours. The woman posted a $2,000 property bond Tuesday and was released. If convicted, she could face a hefty fine or up to a year in jail. (Albany Herald)

07/21/08, Mulberry, FL

A police dog left in a patrol car died after the car's air conditioning compressor failed. Sam Diesel, a two-year-old German shepherd, had been in the car for more than an hour, although it wasn't clear exactly how long he was in the car or when the air conditioning failed. Diesel's handler was working inside the police station and left the dog in the car with the air conditioning running. Keeping the dog in the patrol car with the air conditioning running is standard procedure and done routinely. When Diesel's handler returned to the car about 3:50pm to answer a call she found that Diesel had died and the car's air vents were blowing hot air. The officer was not at fault. The patrol car was awaiting the installation of a heat alarm, which could have alerted her to the danger. A heat alarm, triggered when the temperature inside the car reaches a certain level, sounds the car's horn and sends a page to the officer's electronic pager. The police chief said that Diesel's death took a toll on the officer. "Right now, she isn't doing well," he said. "It's not a matter of losing your property. It's a traumatic situation. It's just like losing your partner. The handlers and the dogs go through so much training together." (The Ledger)

07/19/08, New York, NY

Nearly a dozen neighbors on Manhattan's upper west side took action when they noticed a woman left her seven dogs trapped in an SUV for more than an hour. After someone opened the unattended SUV, a few neighbors put the seven dogs on leashes and offered them much needed water. When the dog's owner returned, she tried to go home with her dogs but neighbors refused to let them go. Police stepped in, ultimately hauling the woman away in handcuffs. She received a summons for animal cruelty and New York City Animal Care and Control took the dogs. An animal control spokesperson said all seven dogs are in good health, and at a shelter where they'll stay until everything is worked out. (WABC-TV New York, NY)

07/15/08 (reported), Ipswich, MA

A local Animal Control Officer discovered dogs left in three hot vehicles at Crane's Beach, in the Hammatt Street parking lot and on Argilla Road. In all three cases, he spoke with the dogs' providers and told them they shouldn't bring dogs along with them during the hot summer months. "The inside of a car can get up to 110 degrees on a 70-degree day," he said. When he is on patrol, the officer looks for signs of an animal being left inside a car. He looks for partially-opened windows and for saliva footprints on the windows. If he sees these signs, he looks inside the vehicle. Animals will hunker down, he said, as far away from the sunlight as they can, under the dashboard for instance. He uses a laser light thermometer to determine the temperature inside a vehicle. If a dog is trapped inside and he thinks the dog is in danger, he will take action. "I have the right," he said, "to remove the dog from the car by any means necessary if the dog is in danger or in distress." That may mean breaking the window. If an animal is injured or killed from being left in a hot vehicle, he can make a criminal complaint, in which case the owner could end up in court. (Ipswich Chronicle)

07/13/08, Sequim, WA

A Pekingese was reported dead after being left in a car for an unknown period of time. The dog perished in the Costco Wholesale parking lot. Another dog was also in the vehicle and survived. Leaving a dog � or any pet � in a vehicle on a warm day can lead to a $250 fine for animal cruelty. When asked whether the owner of the dog that died Sunday was cited, a Sequim code enforcement officer said the incident is still under investigation. (Peninsula Daily News)

07/11/08, Kirkby Lonsdale, Cambria, UK

A couple who went to pick up their son in a supermarket parking lot discovered "two bull terrier-type dogs ... trapped in a car with all of the windows wound right up". Attempts to discover the dogs' caregiver were unsuccessful. According to the husband of the couple, "Eventually another group of people got involved outside and we all decided we could not wait any longer or the dogs would be dead, so one of the others put a brick through the window and got them out. When the owner arrived she was upset about her windows and even when we explained what had happened you could tell she was still miffed. She must have been in [the supermarket] for about 30 minutes." (The Westmorland Gazette)

07/08/08, Aberdeen, Scotland, UK

A woman was fined �400 for leaving her two dogs in her car while she went to the movies. The Sharpeis, Frida and Mr Chuffy, had to be put on a drip after animal welfare and police officers went to their assistance. A passerby had called the Scottish Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SSPCA) after becoming concerned that the dogs were panting excessively and distressed. (The Press and Journal)

07/04/08, Corpus Christi, TX

A TV crew found a Boston Terrier mix found sitting inside an SUV parked at a shopping mall. It was 88 degrees outside and the windows on the Ford Explorer were barely cracked open. Because the dog was panting heavily and there was no water inside, they called police, who got the vehicle open and rescued the dog. Animal care services took the dog, who seemed to be fine. They said they would try to locate the owner and find out why the dog had been left in the enclosed car. (KIII-TV Corpus Christi)

07/04/08, Plano, TX

A woman left her Scottish Terrier in her vehicle in direct sunlight for nearly three hours while inside the Denny's located on U.S. 75. When police arrived, the dog's body registered at 115 degrees. The report stated there was no water in the car. The woman is currently being held in jail facing a felony charge. "Under city ordinance, you are not to ever leave an animal unattended in a vehicle at any time," Plano's Animal Services manager said. "You will be cited and the fines are set by a judge. You will face a class c misdemeanor. If the animal dies the police become involved and you can be charged under a state law felony." He reported that, despite constant community awareness, in addition to this one death 17 individuals were cited for leaving their animals unattended in their vehicle this summer. (Plano Courier Star)

07/01/08, Dundalk, ON, Canada

Police issued an arrest warrant for a driver who left his damaged car, with a dog locked inside, at a gas station near Dundalk. The car, a red Honda Civic, was left locked up on the lot with a Rottweiller dog left inside. Police were called about the abandoned vehicle at about 8:30am but believe it had been there for some time. The car had extensive damage from when it struck guide rails at a location about a half kilometre south on Highway 10. The dog was removed from the car, in good condition, with the assistance of a member of the SPCA. Police say it was fortunate it was reported early enough in the day before the interior could be exposed to mid-day heat. The driver of the car, a 20-year-old man, faces a number of Criminal and Highway Traffic Act charges related to the incident. (The Blue Mountain Courier-Herald)

07/01/08, Milton, ON, Canada

Two dogs � one a golden retriever cross, the other a black lab cross � were left in a vehicle parked at a apartment building for at least an hour-and-a-half. The dogs' continued whining and barking caught the attention of a bystander, who called police at about 3:00pm. "They were suffering from heat exposure and were panting heavily," said police. When humane society personnel responded, they found the dogs in good shape and were outside the vehicle enjoying some fresh air. The dogs were taken to the shelter and claimed the next day. Police later charged a 62-year-old woman visiting from Niagara-on-the-Lake with causing unnecessary suffering to an animal. (Milton Canadian Champion)

06/20/08, San Diego, CA

A San Diego police officer pleaded no contest to misdemeanor animal endangerment after leaving his dog in a closed car in a high-temperature causing death. A judge sentenced him to three years' probation and 100 hours of community service. He also must pay the Police Department nearly $5,000 for the dog. A necropsy performed on Forrest, a five-year-old Belgian Malinois, found the animal died of heatstroke outside the officer's home in Alpine. The officer, a 22-year veteran of the department, was accused of leaving the dog in the police cruiser with the windows rolled up on a day when temperatures in the county reached over 100 degrees. In 2006, a state law was enacted making it a misdemeanor for a person to leave a dog unattended in a vehicle causing great bodily injury or death. Only intentional animal cruelty is a felony. In an effort to prevent similar tragedies in the future, the Police Department announced that it plans to buy heat-alert systems for its fleet of 53 police dog cars similar to those used in other hot-temperature cities such as Dallas, Las Vegas and Phoenix. When the back seat of the patrol car reaches a certain temperature, the system will automatically lower the car's windows, switch on the air conditioning and sound an alarm. The technology will cost about $36,000. (San Diego Union

06/18/08, Norwalk, CA

A 150-pound, eight-year-old Rottweiler named "Sierra" died after being left in a car for nearly an hour. Outside temperatures were in the triple digits and investigators say temperatures inside the car may have been as hot as 120 degrees. The dog's caregiver said he went inside his workplace to drop off something but got distracted by a phone call. The man was charged with two felony counts of animal abuse. (

06/10/08, Salem, NH

A small Bichon dog was left in a locked SUV in a parking deck of a local mall during a statewide heat wave. The SUV was underneath a deck, but heat built up inside the structure. A customer noticed the dog about 6:30pm and called police, and an officer was able to free the dog in about 30 minutes. The dog was clearly in distress, said the officer, and the temperature was oppressive. "It was panting. It had its feet up on the door pawing at the window." The windows were shut tight. He gave the dog water and put it in his air-conditioned cruiser, then contacted the "owner" through a telephone number on the dog's collar. A 25-year-old woman responded. She told police she thought the dog would be OK and had taken the dog for a walk earlier. The police officer said it took about a half-hour to free the dog and another half-hour for the woman to return to the vehicle, so the dog would have been in the SUV for at least an hour had police not intervened. The woman was charged with cruelty to animals. (Union Leader)

06/10/08, Nashua, NH

A man was arrested on a misdemeanor charge of cruelty to animals after leaving his pit bull mix Dominic in his Mercedes parked at a local mall. Thermometer readings showed the interior of the car to be 103-104 degrees. Although the car was parked in a covered section of the mall parking lot, the outside temperature was in the low 90s at the time, and only two windows in the car were cracked open about an inch."This dog was in some distress," said a policeman who responded to the mall parking lot to help in the half-hour effort to get Dominic out of the car. The dog had no water in the car. "He was sitting in the back seat, panting, lethargic." Masella said. Another police officer had arrived at the mall at about 7:10pm in response to a call from security officers who shoppers alerted to the panting dog.The officers spoke with the drivers of the cars parked near the Mercedes who told them that the car had pulled into the parking lot at the same time they did, about 5:45pm. Security at the mall began paging the man to return to his vehicle shortly after the officers began investigating the case but the calls went unanswered until about 7:30pm when he came running out of the mall. "He had been in Joe's restaurant," police said. "Probably having a nice cold beverage." Officers then took the man to jail and Dominic to the Humane Society for Greater Nashua after determining the dog was going to be OK. The man was later released on $1,000 personal recognizance bail pending a June 25 hearing on the charge in Nashua District Court. (Nashua Telegraph)


10/03/07 (reported), Tampa, FL

A Hillsborough County Doctor faces animal cruelty charges, accused of leaving his dog in a locked, hot car in the parking lot of Southbay Hospital. Hillsborough Animal Services investigators were called to the hospital parking lot, after a witness noticed a dog locked in a white BMW. Just as investigators were preparing to bash out the windows in the luxury car, the doctor walked up. He was issued a notice to appear in court on a charge of animal cruelty and was released on his own recognizance. His female, a 10-year-old Rhodesian Ridgeback named "Rainbow," was seized by investigators for evaluation by a veterinarian, then returned to the doctor, who was ordered to take her to his regular veterinarian for treatment. (

09/18/07 (reported), Melbourne, FL

A couple who left their 5-year-old Boston terrier at a day care facility before leaving for a wedding in Pennsylvania later learned the animal died in a hot car. An employee at the Woof Play Care Center called them four days later to tell them their dog had died. "My girls left them in the van," was the reason. The Woof Play Care Center has handled many dogs in its three-year existence, including dogs from Hurricane Katrina. The center released a statement about the situation that said, "It's tragic, our hearts go out to them. We're grieving over this too, and we'll never forget it." (WESH 2)

08/29/07, Murrieta, CA

Two dogs died from the heat in two separate cases of owners leaving their pets chained outside with inadequate shade and water. It is illegal to chain an animal or to fail to provide adequate shelter and water. Animal control officers received a report hat two dogs left outside in very hot weather were in distress and "that the dogs were screaming." When officers arrived, one dog, a 1-year-old female pit bull mix, was dead. Her temperature was 109 degrees, and she had been so desperate to reach water that her chain was wrapped five times around her neck. The other dog, which was in a more shaded area, received veterinary care and appears to be OK. The owner said he hadn't left the dogs for long, but according to the vet who examined them, the dogs had been there for at least three hours. Later in the day, officers received yet another report of a dog left chained in the heat. That dog, which appeared to be a Labrador retriever, also died. Charges are being sought against the owners for animal cruelty, neglect and illegal chaining. Officers are finding lately that even when pet owners provide a dish of water, it is inadequate. The average stainless steel dish gets too hot, is too small and is too easily overturned. In this kind of heat, owners should leave a large tub of water for dogs that must be left outside. (The Press-Enterprise)

08/26/07, Portsmouth, NH

Based on her "Good Samaritan intent," a woman who liberated two dogs from a vehicle over the weekend and refused to return them to their owner until police arrived will not face criminal charges. Around 2:00pm the woman opened the unlocked door of a parked car to let out two dogs she felt were in distress because of the heat. The owner, who was nearby, said he had stepped out of his car to take some photographs and the dogs had only been in the car for 10 to 15 minutes. The two got into a verbal argument until police arrived to mediate the situation. Police determined the dogs were not in distress and were returned to the owner without incident. A police spokesman said that while the woman did not actually break into the vehicle, her act could be considered trespassing, but given the circumstances no charges will be filed. Regardless, he said he would not recommend others to act in a similar manner. "We would never recommend citizens take action like that into their own hands unless it is a true emergency when time is of the essence and police could not respond in a timely fashion," he said, adding that the department's response time for emergency calls is generally under three minutes. (Foster's Daily Democrat)

08/25/07, Zanesville, OH

Two Adamsville residents were charged with animal cruelty after three dogs were found in a hot car on Saturday. An officer responded to the Pick 'N Save parking lot after police received a call about dogs in a hot car. When the officer arrived he found three dogs � one large and two small ones � in a car where the windows were down a couple of inches. However, the officer observed blood in the vehicle and it appeared the dogs had been fighting. The Muskingum County Dog Warden was called, and it appeared the dogs had been in the car for about 50 minutes. A man and woman were charged with animal cruelty, a fourth-degree misdemeanor. (

08/19/07, Olympia, WA

A 6-week-old shepherd-lab puppy was found inside a small cage on the front seat of a locked car. The outside temperature was in the upper 70s, meaning the inside temperature in the sun could reach 120 degrees. Police broke into the car and rescued the puppy before she succumbed to the heat. "When people abuse their animals like that it just heartbreaking," said an Animal Services spokeswoman. "We wish we could do more to the owners. Unfortunately we do have to work within the parameters of the law." The owner of the dog was cited for misdemeanor animal cruelty, and agreed to put the puppy up for adoption through Animal Services. (

08/17/07 (reported), Greenwood, IN

When a Tennessee mother and daughter who claim they rescue animals spent three days at a Holiday Inn in August, they left 22 dogs and cats caged in crates inside a van and SUV. A clerk at the hotel called police after guests all the way on the third floor complained of a stench coming through their vents. Police found the smell coming from the two vehicles, full of animals, on the lot. The 22 cats and dogs � malnourished, dehydrated, diseased � were piled together for days in 90-degree heat. Animal control officers call it one of the worst cases of animal cruelty they've seen. Four of the animals had to be hospitalized. One died. All of them have severe respiratory infections, but animal control says they will survive. Since one of the animals died, prosecutors plan to up the charges against the women to felonies. (

08/14/07, Panama City, FL

Local police are investigating the death of a three-month-old puppy after officers found it locked inside a hot car for over two hours. A couple left the animal in the mall parking lot while they went shopping. When officers arrived, the puppy was severely dehydrated with a temperature of over 107 degrees. Investigators rushed it to a nearby animal hospital after attempting to save its life. The puppy died a few hours later. Officers initially charged a 17-year-old man with one misdemeanor count of animal cruelty, but since the puppy died, he's now facing a felony charge. His 18-year-old girlfriend is also facing felony charges. (

08/12/07, Belleville, ON, Canada

Local police this summer have witnessed a significant increase in the number of calls reporting animals � specifically dogs � which have been left in parked vehicles on hot days. The latest incident occurred in the lot of a shopping plaza when a dog was noticed panting inside a parked car. After searching in vain for the owner of the canine, a police officer managed to unlock the vehicle through a crack in the window. The animal was removed from the vehicle and turned over to the local Humane Society. Later, after police were advised the vehicle had been driven away, the owner was located and "strongly cautioned" by officers. The canine was returned to the owner later in the day. (Belleville Intelligencer)

08/10/07, Boulder, CO

A passer-by called police about 2:30pm after seeing two possibly overheated dogs in an SUV at a Whole Foods parking lot. The caller opened the car's unlocked doors and rolled down the windows to give the animals more air until officers arrived. Animal control officers removed the dogs when the owners � a husband and wife shopping for groceries with their infant at the time � didn't respond to several pages over the store's loudspeaker. When the couple returned to the parking lot after 3:00pm, they found a ticket for animal neglect taped to their SUV's window and a notice that their two dogs had been impounded. The officers, with the dogs crated in the back of an animal-control van, were about to pull away when the couple returned. The couple dispute the allegation of the ticket. The husband said he and his wife were inside Whole Foods only briefly, and they take good care of their dogs � a German shepherd-Labrador mix named Avi and a Rottweiler-Lab mix called Cali. "My dogs are treated fine," he said. "It's no one's business how we treat our animals." (

08/10/07, Newmarket, ON, Canada

A passerby noticed two panting dogs locked inside a sweltering vehicle at a local parking lot. The windows of the car were slightly opened, but not enough to offer the dogs much relief. With no owner in sight, the passerby called police who unlocked the doors upon arrival. The dogs survived unhurt. The owner of the dogs wasn't charged, despite leaving the animals unattended for up to an hour, thus avoiding a possible $2,000 fine or six months in jail. (

08/09/07, Glendale, KY

A man will be charged with misdemeanor second-degree cruelty to animals after his dog died from heat exposure and lack of water. He said it was an accident, that a child let the dog outdoors on a leash for only a few hours. He didn't know one of his two dogs had been let outside when he received a 2:00pm call at work from animal control officers informing him of criminal charges filed against him. The dog was outside for four hours or less before it died, he said. He wasn't sure if it was the heat that actually caused the animal's death, but said the temperature was at or above 100 degrees that day. "I thought both dogs were inside when I left for work that day," he said. It is illegal for people to leave animals staked outside or inside a vehicle without water during periods of heat, such as this summer. (The News-Enterprise)

08/08/07, Washington, DC

With outside temperatures in triple digits, two "pet" owners visiting from Indiana found themselves each facing one misdemeanor count of animal cruelty. They left their dogs, Nigel and Belle, a Chihuahua and Lhaso apso, in their car for more than half an hour while they made housing accommodations. Police say it could have been 110 degrees inside the vehicle. The dogs were taken to an animal hospital and treated with IV fluids and nursed back to health. "An animal should never be left in the car at any time," said a veterinarian at the hospital. "You should think of an animal like your children. You wouldn't want to leave your children for any length of time. In this weather right now it's very irresponsible because they can get overheated in minutes in the hot car." (abc7news)

08/07/07, Wonder Lake, IL

A man who left his 5-year-old Australian sheepdog for two hours in his unlocked parked car with closed windows while he visited his girlfriend faces a misdemeanor animal cruelty charge. An anonymous caller tipped off police, who released the dog. The temperature in the car was at least 110 degrees; outside it was 92 degrees. When the man came out of the house and saw police with his dog, he said he didn't think he had done anything wrong. The dog was taken to a veterinarian and survived without permanent injury. If convicted, the man could face up to a $2,500 fine and a year in jail. (Northwest Herald)

08/07/07, Elizabethtown, KY

A woman charged with misdemeanor second-degree cruelty to animals said the criminal charge against her was a bit extreme, but a good reminder to keep water in her car when taking her dog with her. She had left her retriever in a car while volunteering for four hours at the Serenity Club. She said she often took her dog with her, checking on it hourly while volunteering, but that day she was unable to leave the office to walk and water her dog as she usually did. "The windows were half-way down and there was a blind in the front window," she said. The parking lot where she left the animal is directly behind the courthouse and someone noticed the animal inside and called animal control officers. Officers told the woman the law requires water be left with dogs left inside a vehicle. "They didn't object to the dog being in the car, just that it didn't have any water," she said. "I didn't know that was a law." She said she didn't hold any grudges against whoever reported the situation to authorities and wasn't upset that she'd been charged. Her dog lived and is doing well. (The News-Enterprise)

08/05/07, Williamsburg, VA

Two people have been charged with one count each of animal cruelty, a Class 1 misdemeanor, leaving their dog in a hot car at the Colonial Williamsburg Visitor Center for three hours. Officers responding to the visitor center about 12:15pm found a small white dog inside a parked vehicle. The driver's side window was open about halfway, and passenger's side window was cracked about one inch. There was no water in the car for the dog to drink, and officers measured the temperature inside the car to be 120 degrees. When officers tried to get into the vehicle, the dog became aggressive, so they instead placed a bowl of water through the window onto the driver's seat. The dog's owners returned to the car about 2:00pm, and told police they had left the dog at 11:00am, expecting to be gone for only a short time. The dog was initially seized by County Animal Control, but was later returned to the owners. (

08/05/07, Torrevieja, Spain

After local police were notified that a dog inside a car showed obvious suffocating signs, a police officer used a jimmy to open the car door and remove the dog, a Husky, who was foaming at the mouth. Neighbors threw water on the dog to cool him down, an action credited with taking the dog out of immediate danger. At a local vet clinic it was found that the dog was absolutely dehydrated, having been in the car for more than two hours. The vet's report certified severe hypothermia of more than 107 degrees F. After being cooled down to 102, the dog, still comatose, was admitted to the veterinary hospital in serious condition. The owners of the car were found, and were charged with abandoning an animal and putting his safety at severe risk. (

08/03/07, Toledo, OH

Toledo Mayor Carty Finkbeiner is under fire for parking in a handicapped space and for leaving his dog in the car in 90-degree weather. He says he parked in the spot to keep his dog, Scout, cool in the shade. Scout, he said, had plenty of water. Radio call-in shows and Web sites have criticized the mayor for the illegal parking (for which he was ticketed) and for leaving his dog (for which he was not ticketed). The mayor said that he does not usually drive around with Scout and that he thinks these attacks are politically motivated. "We love that dog dearly," he said. "If he dies from anything, it's going to be from over-affection." (

08/03/07, Portsmouth, NH

A man left his 5-year-old Chihuahua, Coco, in his van for half an hour while running errands while the outside temperature was 93 degrees. When the man returned to his van, he found Coco unresponsive, although (he says) the windows were down and there was ice water in the van for the dog. The man attempted to cool off Coco by laying him on the ground in the Home Depot parking lot and dumping a gallon of water on him. When that didn't work, he tried using a fan to revive Coco. Store employees urged him to take Coco to a veterinarian, but the dog was declared dead on arrival. The man was charged with misdemeanor animal cruelty. (

07/31/07, Canoga Park, CA

A man was arrested for felony animal neglect after his dog was left unattended in a car and died of apparent heat exhaustion. Passersby saw his Labrador retriever about 1:00pm in the unlocked car. Someone called 911, and another person tried to give the dog some water, but the animal went into convulsions and died, officials said. Police arrested the man a short time later and he is held on $20,000 bail. If convicted of felony animal neglect, the man could face up to three years in prison. (

07/31/07, Kingston, NH

A man was arrested on a charge of animal cruelty for leaving his 110-pound Great Dane in the car in the heat. About 15 people went store to store looking for the owner before calling police. The group then stood around in the heat as police attempted to get the dog, Rosie, out of the car. The department's door-opening tools didn't work because of safety features on the car, so police had to smash a window to get the Great Dane out. Rosie jumped right out after police put a blanket down so she wouldn't cut herself on the broken glass. At the time it was 87 degrees outside and more than 100 degrees inside the car, which was parked in direct sunlight. Although the windows had been left cracked open, it wasn't enough. "The dog was starting to feel the effects of the heat as a result of being left in the very hot car," police said. They took Rosie to the shade of some nearby trees and gave her water while they waited for the car's owner to return. The man was surprised to be arrested after finishing lunch at a plaza shops, but later realized how dangerous it was to have left Rosie in the car, said police. He was released on $1,000 personal recognizance. (The Eagle Tribune)

07/31/07, Toronto, ON, Canada

A Toronto Humane Society investigator was forced to break a car window to rescue a dog left in a parked car with oven-like conditions. The dog, a large breed Rottweiler weighing about 110 pounds, had been sealed in the locked car with no windows open for several hours. The temperature inside the vehicle had reached in excess of 158 degrees F. The official said the dog was "slumped over the back seat with his legs up and a blank stare forward, death stare we call it, foaming from the mouth and he was non-responsive. So I immediately smashed the window and opened the car doors and dragged the dog out and brought it onto the pavement." Bystanders poured buckets of cold water on the dog, hoping to revive him. Veterinarians rushed the dog to Humane Society headquarters and gave him oxygen and IV on arrival. It's too soon to know if the animal suffered brain damage. When the owner finally emerged after hearing his car alarm go off, the official handcuffed him to the vehicle while police were called. While the official left to tend to the dog, apparently an enraged witness attacked the owner as he was shackled to his car, since he was bleeding when officers arrived to take him away. Charges against the person who inflicted the beating may be pending. (

Update: Cyrus's former "owner" pleaded guilty to animal cruelty and was put on probation for a year. He cannot have any contact with Cyrus or Cyrus's new caregivers, nor can he have another dog or cat for a year. He has to pay $3,534 to the Toronto Humane Society to cover expenses incurred in saving Cyrus. Two men were charged with assaulting the man while he was handcuffed to his SUV. The man explained that he had left Cyrus in his SUV because he was visiting a friend who had asked him not to bring the dog inside because there was a cat in the home. He said left Cyrus in the back of his SUV at about noon, returned a few times to turn on the air-conditioning, rolled the windows down a bit but did not leave any water. (The Toronto Star)

07/29/07, James City County, VA

Observant customers and a quick-thinking police officer saved a Jack Russell terrier from the confines of a hot car. The police officer, who was at the outlet mall on an unrelated call, went to help the dog, named Duke, after multiple shoppers alerted outlet security to its plight. The temperature topped 90 degrees Sunday, and the officer said he could see the terrier as soon as he approached the blue Jeep Cherokee. "Four of the windows were down about an inch and the dog's muzzle � nose and all � was stuck outside that crack as far as he could get it," he said. "He looked like he was in distress." With the help of an outlet security officer, the police officer stuck his police baton through the cracked window and used it to hit the unlock button on the door. He said Duke was panting heavily, and there was no food or water in the car. "We immediately were able to give him water and get him calmed down," he said. He estimated the dog had been left alone in the car for at least 45 minutes. After being released and having a drink, Duke lay down under a tree. When Duke's "owner" approached 10 to 15 minutes later, the police officer and animal control officers issued him a summons and explained the dangers of leaving an animal alone in a hot car. The "owner," a 32-year-old man from North Carolina, faces a charge of cruelty to animals, a Class 1 misdemeanor. (

07/27/07, Lee County, FL

A deputy rescued a 7-pound terrier mix after he spotted the dog trapped in a car in the afternoon heat, poking her nose through a small window crack. When the dog's "owner" returned to the car, the deputy asked him about the dog. The man ignored repeated requests for his ID, got into his car, and nearly backed over the deputy as he drove away. Deputies followed the man to his house. He didn't have a valid driver's license and they say he resisted arrest. They took him to jail and officials with Animal Control confiscated the dog. The dog will likely be put up for adoption by Lee County Animal Services. The man was in jail, charged with cruelty to animals, resisting arrest, and driving on a suspended license. (

07/25/07, Ellsworth, ME

A mother and her adult daughter left their two dogs inside their car while they shopped at a Home Depot. When the women emerged from the store about 45 minutes later, the dogs had died from heat exhaustion. The women said they left their dogs inside the car but kept the engine and air conditioning running. When they returned to the car, the engine and air conditioning were not running. Police later observed the air-conditioning controls were in the on position and the keys were in the ignition. The women tried to administer CPR to the dogs, a Rottweiler and a Lab mix, but were unsuccessful. By that time, a Home Depot employee had called police The police have begun an investigation of animal cruelty. (

07/25/07, Missoula, MT

A woman returned home from running errands and got distracted while getting her kids in the house. Her two elderly Labs were left in the car, and died in less than 30 minutes. The woman reported the deaths and was not ticketed. (

07/23/07, Bitterroot Valley, MT

Two dogs died in a crew-cab truck on a 104-degree when their "owner" was busied with other projects. The dogs, Jake and Keeto, jumped in the truck with her as she ran a client back to Missoula. She said that on hot days Jake and Keeto usually ran for shade as soon as she got home, so she didn't notice their absence for a couple of hours. Both were rescued dogs; they loved to run along with her horses every day and clear grouse from the trail. The woman reported the incident and was not ticketed. She commented, "I know full well the dangers of heat. I got too focused on the next step of my life. By the time I recognized the dogs were in there, it was too late." (

07/22/07, Sacramento, CA

A couple left their dog in a locked car while they dined in a local restaurant when the outside temperature was in the mid-90s. After a passerby noticed the dog locked inside with the windows closed, a Sacramento City animal control officer took pictures and temperature readings. The highest reading was 142 degrees. The officer took the dog to an emergency clinic to be checked out, and wrote the owners a ticket. "We went to a restaurant thinking we'd just come right back. And we had just gone camping where it was cool, like we were in the shade," said one of the "owners" of the dog. "I had just told [my husband], I said you know, we need to make sure we check on the dog. But with the 3 kids and the baby, you just don't think about it." She said they thought about taking the dog to the restaurant, but they didn't want to leave her outside where somebody could steal her. "So I think it can happen to anybody. I'm hoping she's okay because we love our dog." (

07/21/07, Shreveport, LA

A woman left her beagle puppy locked in her car while she went to visit a friend in the ICU at the LSU Health Science Center. Outside temperatures reached 92 degrees. A bystander heard the dog crying out for help and 911. The fire department succeeded in rescuing the beagle, which police have nicknamed PoPo. The woman said she was gone for only 30 minutes but police said they had been on the call for 45 minutes. The woman was charged with animal abuse. (

07/19/07, Greensboro, NC

A man attending an auto auction decided to bring the cat he was "cat-sitting" for, leaving the animal in his minivan in the parking lot. The cat was bobcat or lynx. The cat was in the minivan with the windows vented, in 95-degree heat. A spokeswoman for local Animal Control said a man walking by the van was swiped at by the big cat. The man was not injured and it's unclear whether the man provoked the male cat, which is declawed, she said. The man called animal control officials, who confiscated the cat and brought it to the county's animal shelter. The cat was in good condition, she said. The owner of the van received a $50 citation for mistreatment of animals. His sister, the owner of the cat, may also be cited because it is illegal to have an exotic animal in the county. (

07/17/07, Largo, FL

A woman left her 77-pound Golden Retriever locked in her car outside a grocery store. The car was parked in direct sunlight, with the engine turned off and the windows rolled all they way up. When the woman came back to her car, she was arrested on animal cruelty charges. Police say a thermometer placed inside the car after it was opened read 135 degrees. (

07/15/07, Brownsville, TX

A man visiting the Gladys Porter Zoo left his dog locked inside the family van in the parking lot for at least two hours. The reported heat index at the time was 93 degrees, according to police. No food or water for the dog, a terrier mix, was found in the van. The man was arrested on one count of animal cruelty, a Class C misdemeanor with a maximum fine of $225. Animal Control officers confiscated the dog. (The Brownsville Herald)

07/15/07, Kamloops, BC, Canada

Seven's "owner" thought he was doing everything right, when he left the windows of his truck down about four inches and provided a large basin of water on the floor for Seven to drink from while he shopped at Wal-Mart. But the manager of the local SPCA, ironically in the parking lot to do a tv story on the dangers of heat and animals in vehicles, saw Seven in distress. Seven was removed from the vehicle � which had an internal temperature of 113 F. � and taken to a vet clinic, where he was successfully cooled off. The "owner" was not charged. (Kamloops This

07/14/07, Lawrence, KS

A Missouri man was ticketed for animal cruelty after he left a dog unattended in his car. A local ordinance makes it illegal to leave an animal alone in a car for more than five minutes when the temperature is hotter than 80 degrees. (The temperature reached 90 degrees.) (Lawrence Journal-World & eNews)

07/10/07, Bluffton, SC

A 33-year-old Florida man was charged with leaving his dog in a locked vehicle while he ate lunch at a local restaurant. Someone noticed the dog in the SUV and called the sheriff's office. A deputy eventually tracked down the owner. The dog had been inside the Toyota Tundra for more than 40 minutes in 87 degree heat. The man told the deputy that "the dog is used to the heat" because he is from Florida. It is a misdemeanor in South Carolina to leave animals unattended in vehicles. (

07/04/07, Missoula, MT

A dead dog was dumped in a Missoula-area Wal-Mart parking lot. It is believed the dog died in the car while its owners were shopping. Although the incident was caught on surveillance video, police were not able to get the license plate of the car. (

07/02/07, Sacramento, CA

Queenie, a pit bull mix, died in the back of a car parked in a vacant lot. An animal control officer left a warning on the car on his first visit July 1. In two follow-up visits, officers determined that the animal was in no danger. What they didn't know was that Queenie's "owner" had been in jail since June 28, on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon following a knife fight. The car's windows were cracked and a shade cover sheltered the front window. The "owner" said he asked the sheriff's deputy who arrested him to allow him to free the dog to the care of an associate of his aunt, but the deputy ignored him. (A spokesman for the Sheriff's Department said deputies have "no record of him telling us that he had a dog in the car.") On the third visit the dog was dead. Animal control removed Queenie's body and left a note for the "owner," a note which he was unable to see. (

07/01/07, Grand Junction, AZ

A dog "owner" who left an older, pointer mix breed in the back seat of a passenger car with windows slightly cracked open will face at least a $250 fine, said Mesa County Animal Services. Officers lowered a thermometer through the window to find inside temperatures of 123.4 degrees. It is illegal to subject animals to temperatures of more than 100 degrees in vehicles. The dog had been left with a bowl of water. A locksmith opened the car door and the dog was taken to the shelter. (

07/00/07, Boulder, CO

In July 2007, 54 incidents of dogs left in hot cars (1 dog died) were reported to Boulder police, who began to issue tickets to vehicle owners for the offence. (

06/30/07, Boulder, CO

A married couple who left their 2-year-old bulldog in their parked car while the temperature reach 92 degrees will be charged with animal cruelty over the dog's death. When they found their dog in distress, the couple removed her from the car and poured water and ice on her, but the bulldog died on the way to an emergency vet clinic. The dog's "owners" could face $1,000 fines and court-ordered probation. (Rocky Mountain

06/27/07, Warwick, RI

A 9-year-old Doberman died after it was left in a parked car for almost three hours. The Doberman's "owner" went to work and forgot that she brought her dog with her. When she went out to her car before noon, the dog was dead. The woman could face a misdemeanor charge of cruelty to animals. (

06/27/07, Brantford, ON, Canada

A one-and-a-half-year-old dog named Jada died after being trapped in a hot car while her "owner" attended a charity casino. Jada had been left in a dark-colored car with tinted windows � two of the windows were down just about one inch. A casino security officer managed to get into the small gap in one of the windows and pulled it outwards to make it wider. He was then able to unlock the car door and remove the dog. However, the dog was already in very serious condition. She was convulsing, her body was hot to the touch and her skin was covered in broken blood vessels. She died minutes after being removed from the car. The Ontario SPCA charged the man with three counts of animal cruelty under the Criminal Code of Canada: failure to provide suitable and adequate care; wilfully causing unnecessary pain; and wilfully causing unnecessary suffering. (Canadian Federation of Humane Societies)

06/23/07, Niagara Falls, ON, Canada

A passerby found a 4-month-old cock-a-poo puppy lying on its side in a parked car at Marineland. The car registered a temperature of 140 F. The dog was rescued and is recovering. The dog's "owner" faces animal cruelty charges. (Niagara Falls Review)

06/19/07, Philadelphia, PA

Animal control officers rescued 26 dozen cats locked in the back of a pickup truck where the inside temperature was more than 100. The cats were taken to a local veterinarian for care. A homeless man who lived in the truck was arrested when he returned to the site after bicycling to a local store, and charged with animal cruelty. (

06/18/07, Lakewood, CA

Two cats were rescued from a sweltering car in a Wal-Mart parking lot after a passerby called the Southeast Area Animal Control Authority. The cats had been inside the car for at least two hours when officers reached through the 3-inchgap in the sun roof with snake tongs to unlock the car. (The driver's side window was opened about an inch.) The cats were locked inside a plastic animal carrier. The temperature in the car had reached 120 degrees it was opened to rescue the cats. The temperature outside was about 90 degrees. The cats � a black domestic shorthair and a long-haired Seal Point Himalayan, both female � were panting heavily, salivating profusely, and appeared lethargic. "Another 20 minutes and they probably would have gone into a coma," said an Authority officer. The cats were cooled down and taken to the agency's veterinary facility, where they have responded well to treatment. It took about an hour for the cats' body temperatures to cool down to normal. At press time the driver of the car, which had Maryland plates, had not yet returned. Under California's new law prohibiting leaving animals unattended in hot vehicles, the driver could be fined or jailed. If the cats aren't claimed within 14 days, they will be considered abandoned and available for adoption. (

06/18/07, Indianapolis, IN

Metropolitan police ticketed two people who left a dog unattended in the cab of a pickup truck. The vehicle was not running and the driver's side window was cracked about two inches. The 20-pound dog was barking and panting heavily in the truck while the temperature was about 87 degrees. The police officer opened the truck's door and was calling for animal control when the two young people showed up. They said they had left the dog for about five minutes while they filled out job applications, but the officer said he witnessed the dog in the vehicle for more than 15 minutes. The couple said the dog was not house trained and would make a mess if left alone in their home. The officer issued them a court summons for misdemeanor animal neglect. (

06/17/07, Federal Heights, CO

When they realized they couldn't bring their dog into Water World, the dog's caregivers left the dog in the car with the windows rolled down. Temperatures reached the upper 90s. Police officers rescued the dog and give it water. They said the dog appeared to be okay, although they estimated it had been inside the steaming car for more than one hour. The dog's caregivers were cited with a summons to appear in court for animal cruelty. (ABC 7 News)

06/09/07, Carson City, NV

A citizen's report brought sheriff's deputies to a parked car where a cat was crying inside. Windows were cracked about an inch but there was no wind and the car was parked in direct sunlight on the 85-degree day. The cat was using all its energy to breathe and looked in "immediate need of assistance," said a deputy. A window punch was unsuccessful, a deputy used his baton to break a window. The cat was placed in the air-conditioned patrol car along with some water. The car's inside temperature was estimated at more than 100 degrees. The 19-year-old male driver of the car said he didn't think he would be gone for too long but was cited on suspicion of animal cruelty. (

06/08/07, Ottawa, ON, Canada

A Quebec man who works in Ottawa has been charged with animal cruelty after a dog was allegedly left in the back of a truck to die of heat exhaustion. The man told investigators that the eight-month-old Mastiff-type dog � which he described as a Dogo Argentina � had been defecating indoors and had to be removed. He admitted to placing the dog in the back of a capped pick-up truck, when the temperature was a relative 98 degrees F. When he returned to the truck two hours later, the dog was dead, so he disposed of the body in the dumpster. Results of an OHS post-mortem examination on the dog indicate the animal likely died of heat exhaustion � the result of being locked inside the truck for too long at extreme temperatures. The man was charged with two counts of animal cruelty under the Criminal Code of Canada, for failing to provide suitable and adequate care to an animal and for causing unnecessary pain, suffering and injury to the same animal. (Ottawa Humane Society)

06/07/07, Bellflower, CA

A Chihuahua locked in a car at an apartment complex was rescued by an animal control officer. Although it was 75 degrees outside around 2:00pm, a thermometer pushed through the window of the car indicated it was 118 degrees inside the vehicle. The dog was panting and trying to climb under a seat to escape the heat. The dog was rescued and taken to the Southeast Area Animal Control Authority's veterinary clinic. Authorities were looking for the owner of the car. (

06/06/07, Cookeville, TN

Two police officers investigating a report of a dog left in a car parked at Wal-Mart used a temperature gauge to discern that the interior of the car was 106 degrees F. "The dog was panting very hard and the windows on the vehicle were only down approximately an inch," said an officer. They removed the dog and put it in air conditioned vehicle. After identifying the owner of the car, they had Wal-Mart page for her. When the woman finally arrived, the car had been parked for about an hour. By that time the interior temperature was 116 degrees. She was charged with animal cruelty. (Herald-Citizen)

06/01/07, Manchester, NH

An English bulldog named Fats died of heat stroke when his "owner" left him and a pit bull named Kane outside in a pen with an asphalt floor, without providing the pair with any water or shade. The woman admitted putting the dogs in the pen without cover or water at 8:15am when she left for work. She had no concerns about them being without shade because it was not hot when she left. But the outside temperature reached 90 and the bulldog died. Kane recovered and was impounded. Animal Control will ask the court to order that the dog not be returned to the woman or her boyfriend. The woman was charged with misdemeanor animal cruelty. (New Hampshire Union Leader)

06/00/07, Topeka, KS

When a sheriff's deputy left a drug-detecting dog in his hot car for several hours while he went inside his home and, distracted by his kids, forgot about the dog, it was a fatal mistake. The dog had been purchased just two months before, for $6,600, using confiscated drug money. The Attorney General is looking in to the matter. Because there is such a problem with methamphetamine in the county, commissioners want to get another drug dog. But, before they do that, they say they'll set up some rules for how the dog will be cared for. (

05/31/07, Yonkers, NY

Evie, an 8-year-old golden retriever, was left in her caregiver's car in 90-degree temperatures while he went into a store. Police were alerted by a passerby and found Evie panting inside the car. One window was open about an inch. Evie was removed, given water, and turned over to the Yonkers Animal Shelter. The car impounded. When Evie's caregiver returned, he claimed he'd been gone only 20 minutes. He was charged with animal cruelty. (The Journal News)

03/25/07, Lancaster, PA

Chunko and Abby, male and female Weimaraners, were rescued by police and representatives from the Organization for Responsible Care of Animals after a neighbor saw a couple leave the dogs in a black Volkswagen Beetle. The people, from Silver Spring, MD, were in town to have lunch with friends; they locked the dogs in the car and walked to a nearby college, leaving Chunko and Abby in the car for about three hours. When police opened the car, the male Weimaraner was lying listlessly on the sidewalk while the female was slumped halfway out the door. The dogs were rushed to emergency treatment, but the male was in critical condition. Although both dogs were recovering, Chunko had symptoms of blindness. Police cited the couple for negligence, which carries a maximum fine of $750. (Intelligencer Journal)

03/22-26/07, Sydney, Australia

A drug detection dog died from dehydration and heatstroke after he was left locked in a car at a Sydney prison car park (parking lot) for five days. Rookie, an 11-year-old border collie, was the acknowledged "top dog" of the New South Wales Corrective Services Department's 50-dog drug detection unit. But between March 22 and March 26, 2007, Rookie died from dehydration and heatstroke in circumstances that have created uproar in the department. Rookie was left locked in a department station wagon for five days in a car park at the rear of the John Moroney Correctional Centre near Windsor, in Sydney's west. RSPCA sources believe Rookie may not have survived the first day. Rookie's handler, who was on holiday in Adelaide at the time of his death, told colleagues of how the dog touched people's lives wherever he was based in the NSW jails system. Just how Rookie came to be forgotten in the car is still being determined. A local Corrective Services officer pleaded not guilty to a charge of failing to exercise reasonable care and aggravated cruelty. The judge was expected to hand down a decision on December 18. (The Advertiser)

03/13/07, Phoenix, AZ

Top, a Phoenix K-9 police dog whose specialty was ferreting out drug stashes in hidden vehicle compartments, was rushed to a veterinarian after being left in an unmarked police vehicle without ventilation for an hour and 45 minutes. While it's standard procedure to leave K-9s in the car � police vehicles are typically left idling with air-conditioning and ventilation on, and marked cars have sensors that alert officers by siren or pager when the interior temperature gets too high � Top's unmarked Ford pickup, was not equipped with the sensor technology. Authorities said the car was idling at the time, but the air-conditioning may have malfunctioned. The handler and clinic employees decided to euthanize Top, a 5-year-old black Labrador, the following day. The police department is treating the incident as an accident. (The Arizona Republic)

01/11/07, Auckland, New Zealand

A teenager left Toby, a 4-year-old Spoodle (poodle-cross), in her car while she and a friend drank coffee at a cafe on an "extremely hot and humid" January afternoon (midsummer in New Zealand). After complaints from members of the public, an SPCA inspector broke into the girl's car and, according to the organisation's summary, "when the glass shattered, a heat wave that emanated from the interior of the vehicle was so hot that it caused the SPCA inspector's glasses to heat up." A judge ordered the 18-year-old to pay about $650 to the SPCA but discharged her without conviction, saying the consequences of a conviction outweighed her offending. The teenager says she has seen the "other side of the SPCA", which "treated me badly". When she and her friend went to the caf� she should have provided ventilation for the dog, rather than leave him in the car for more than an hour with the windows sealed. "I did actually think about going to get Toby out but he is quite excitable and I decided it was best if he stayed in the car." (The New Zealand Herald)


08/19/06, Newmarket, ON, Canada

A dog was left to swelter in a car for more than an hour while his owner shopped at a mall. Witnesses who called the police said the dog had been left in the car for at least 20 minutes with only one window barely cracked open. The temperature outside was about 81 degrees Fahrenheit. When the officer tried to open the window more, the dog became scared and lay on the car floor. By the time the officer was able to open the car, the dog didn't respond and needed water and the air-conditioning of the police cruiser before he perked up. When the owner returned to the car he was charged with causing unnecessary suffering to an animal. The dog was turned over to the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. (Toronto Sun)

08/09/06, Savannah, GA

Police say for the third time in just one week, someone left an animal in a hot car. In this case, a woman left her small dog in the cab of a pickup truck for more than three hours while visiting a friend in nearby Georgetown. The dog is okay, but it was hot to the touch and panting heavily when officers showed up. They arrested the woman and charged her with animal cruelty. (WTOC 11)

08/03/06, Shelton, CT

A woman faces a $1,000 fine and a year in prison after being charged with animal cruelty when she left a puppy in a car while temperatures outside registered 102 degrees. The woman had gone into Wal-Mart around noon, leaving Tyson, an 8-month-old pit-bull mix, inside the car which had its front windows open about two inches and back windows open three inches. Police called by witnesses were able to unlock the car door and the dog was put into an air-conditioned cruiser. Tyson was transported to the Shelton dog pound where he is recovering. A local Animal Control Officer said, "If people hadn't called us to tell us about him being locked in the car, I don't think he would have lasted much longer." (Republican-American)

07/22/06, Fredericksburg, VA

A cockatoo died after being left in a hot car while the bird's owner went to the movies. Moviegoers spotted the bird in distress as they were going into the theater. They told an employee, who came outside, saw the bird and called police. When an officer arrived, the cockatoo was lying in a cage in the back seat. The officer quickly got the car door open, but the bird was already dead. The temperature at the time was 90 degrees and the heat index was 97. The windows in the car were all rolled up except for the driver's window, which was open about an inch. The 25-year-old woman was charged with cruelty to animals, a Class 1 misdemeanor that carries a potential 12-month jail sentence. (The Free Lance-Star)

07/17/06, Fort Myers, FL

Four dogs � two of them 6-month-old puppies � were left for nearly an hour in a truck with closed windows while the owner stopped to buy flea and tick control at a local Wal-Mart. Temperatures inside the truck were near 140 degrees. The dogs, which survived, were turned over to Animal Services. The owner was charged with four counts of animal cruelty. (The News-Press)

07/04/06, Cary, NC

A woman left her dog for about an hour inside a 122-degree car in a mall parking lot. The dog survived but the woman was charged with misdemeanor animal cruelty. A veterinarian at Oberlin Animal Hospital in nearby Raleigh cautioned, "The best advice is to leave [animals] at home. In an enclosed vehicle, just may be a matter of five or ten minutes, not very long at all, you think they're safe for just a few minutes to run in. Not so." (

07/00/06, Oakland, PA

Tia, a 4-year-old cat left in a car by a woman for at least three days, is recovering at a local no-kill shelter. Witnesses called the authorities after noticing the cat seeking shade under a seat while outside temperatures were around 85 degrees. Last summer the woman was convicted in a similar incident in which a dog died of heat stroke in her overheated car. For this current offense, she was ordered to serve 90 days in jail, pay a $750 fine, and forfeit her cat to the shelter. She is prohibited from owning any animals for 90 days. This is the maximum sentence allowable for the summary offense. The woman did not attend the hearing and a warrant was issued for her arrest. (Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

06/26/06 - 07/02/06, United Kingdom

In the 7 days between Monday 26 June and Sunday 2 July, the RSPCA dealt with 222 incidents where dogs had been left behind in vehicles. Almost half of these incidents were reported on the July 1-2 weekend. One dog died in a car at Europe's biggest Agricultural Show that weekend. RSPCA officers and the police broke into a BMW at The Royal Show at the National Agricultural Centre, Stoneleigh, Warwickshire, but sadly the whippet had already died. The heat in the car was more than 117 degrees F. Three terrier-type dogs also had to be removed from a van � the RSPCA is investigating both incidents. Around the country, many dogs were left behind without water and were seen sweating, barking, and thrashing around in desperate attempts to escape from vehicles. Anyone found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to an animal under the 1911 Protection of Animals Act faces up to a �5,000 fine and/or six months in prison. Owners can also be banned from keeping animals, possibly for life. (K9 Magazine)

06/21/06, Tucson, AZ

A young pygmy goat was rescued from death after being found in a hot car in a hospital parking lot. Temperatures inside the car reached as high as 120 degrees. The goat's owners, who apparently left the goat in the car after they were told they could not bring it into the hospital, now face three felony animal cruelty and neglect charges. (

06/19/06, Salt Lake City, UT

A 1-year-old female pit bull (or boxer) mix died at a veterinary clinic after being discovered inside a pickup truck with the windows rolled up. A woman who spotted the dog called Salt Lake County Animal Services, and the animal control officer arrived three minutes later. The officer found the doors to the pickup unlocked. Said a spokesperson for Animal Services, "The dog was lying on its side and panting heavily. The officer poured water all over the dog, but it didn't help." The dog had a temperature of 107 at the vet's, and the truck was near 130 degrees. When the animal control officer returned from taking the dog to the vet, the pickup truck was gone. (KSL TV)

06/16/06, Central Square, NY

A chocolate Labrador died after its 17-year-old owner left it inside a locked car for 2 hours in the parking lot of the Central Square Wal-Mart. The high temperature that day was 82 degrees. When police arrived, an agitated crowd of 30 or more had surrounded the vehicle with the dog convulsing inside. A police sergeant broke a window of the vehicle and removed the 2-year-old dog. It was pronounced dead at a nearby animal hospital a short time later. "It was nothing intentional on the boy's part," said the local police chief. "But he screwed up in a big way." The teenager, from Central Square, is out on bail, facing a charge of misdemeanor animal cruelty in the dog's death from heat exposure. (The Post-Standard)

05/30/06, Hopewell, NY

A woman was charged with animal cruelty after she left her 5-month-old cockapoo puppy in a parked vehicle in direct sunlight, with the passenger window slightly cracked. She left the car in a Wal-Mart parking lot to go see a movie. A Wal-Mart truck driver walking through the parking lot just before 6:00pm heard the dog barking and called 911. By the time police and Humane Society officials arrived, the puppy had died. Temperatures in the area had reached a record 92 degrees. (Rochester Democrat and Chronicle)

05/26/06 (reported), Jacksonville, FL

A woman was arrested on animal cruelty charges after police said she left three puppies locked inside a car that heated up to over 100 degrees. An officer saw the puppies in the car and called for an animal control officer. When they could not locate the owner, the officer jimmied the door open to get them out, but it was too late. The puppies were unresponsive and near death. They were later euthanized. The woman told police she left the puppies inside the car while watching her son play baseball at a nearby park. (

05/24/06, San Bruno, CA

A man left his brother's dog, a black Lab mix named Chase, in his car at 4:00am when he went inside a local casino to gamble. When he returned 8 hours later, the dog was dead. A necropsy confirmed that the dog died of hyperthermia and had bitten his tongue while suffering seizures as the temperature heated up in the car. The man was so distraught he turned himself in to police. Police and the Humane Society plan to ask that animal cruelty charges be filed against him. If convicted, the man could face up to a $20,000 fine and a year in jail. (The Mercury News)

05/16/06, Richland, SC

Attile, a 17-month-old German shepherd, died of heat stroke when a sheriff's deputy in the K-9 unit left the dog in his patrol car while he observed other dog handlers during drug detection training. The dog was unresponsive when he returned to the vehicle. Patrol cars for deputies who handled police dogs are equipped with devices to lower the windows and sound a siren when the temperature in the car exceeds 85 degrees. Officials say the devices were not activated in the deputy's car that day. The deputy has been suspended without pay and the department is implementing a new policy to require that the devices be activated. (

11/06/05, Tampa, FL

Lil Mamma, a Jack Russell terrier, died of heat stroke a day after being rescued by a deputy on bicycle patrol from a car parked at a shopping mall. Animal Services took the dog to a veterinarian for emergency treatment of convulsions and heat stroke, but she died the next day. The man who left her in his 4-door sedan with the windows cracked open only a few inches was charged with animal cruelty. (St. Petersburg Times)

08/09/05, Forest Park, GA

An animal rescue activist was arrested on a charge of animal cruelty after leaving her bull terrier, Hank, in her parked car for about 2-1/2 hours while she attended a meeting of the Georgia pet Advisory Board. The arrested woman had checked on Hank about every 45 minutes, to run the air conditioner and give him water. The windows were left about halfway down, but the interior of the car was measured at 103 degrees. She was busted by members of the Department of Agriculture's animal control section, who had been at the meeting and were parked near her car. If convicted, the woman will likely have her license to operate a shelter revoked. (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

08/07/05, Rockford, IL

Sampson, a Rottweiler-mix about 6 months old, was left in the back of an extended-cab Ford pickup with only a small opening for air, by a man who went to watch the Rockford AirFest. The man was ticketed for leaving an animal in a vehicle, but animal-cruelty charges may be added later. Police estimate that Sampson was in the truck for more than an hour before he was freed. "When they got there, the dog was on the verge of collapse," said the Director of the Winnebago County Animal Services. "[He] was taken to the emergency clinic on the east side, given an IV of fluid and is doing fine now." The puppy is now in the possession of Animal Services and won't be released to the owner until a meeting with the state's attorney's office. (Rockford Register Star)

08/06/05, Catoosa, IL

A married couple were charged with two counts of animal cruelty each when they left their two Labrador Retrievers to suffocate to death in their black suburban vehicle while they were inside the Cherokee Casino. Only the two back windows cracked about one to two inches, and the dogs had no water. A passerby happened to notice the dogs and called 911. One dog was still alive and foaming at the mouth when the passerby called but the dog died by the time help arrived. The couple was distraught. The cruelty to animal charge carries a fine of up to $500 or imprisonment for up to 5 years or both. (Claremore Daily Progress)

08/03/05, St. Clairsville, WV

Animal cruelty charges have been filed against a woman who left her small dog locked in a parked car for more than 30 minutes while she shopped at a local Toys R Us. Alerted by a caller, Belmont County sheriff�s deputies unlocked the car, removed the �suffering� dog, and gave him water while they waited for the owner to return to the car. The temperature at the time was 86 degrees with a heat index of 92 degrees. "It was a small dog, and the little guy was panting," a Sheriff�s Department spokesman said. "She left three windows of the vehicle cracked about an inch." The woman said she was sending her children out to check on the dog. (

07/18/05, Coarsegold, CA

A man from Sunland, CA, was arrested after deputies found a small white dog locked inside a car at the Chukchansi Casino. All the windows on the car were rolled up. By the time the 12-year-old dog was found, he was barely alive. His breathing was shallow and, despite efforts by security and casino patrons to give the animal water, he lacked any strength to take a gulp. Animal Control was called in and took custody of the dog. The man is facing felony animal cruelty charges, and was released from the county jail after posting a $10,000 bond. (

07/12/05, Salt Lake City, UT

A man was cited for animal cruelty after he left his Labrador retriever mix for about 2-1/2 hours inside a vehicle parked with no shade and the windows rolled up. The man went to visit his father, then decided to go to lunch and forgot about his dog. Police received a call that the dog was inside the vehicle thrashing around, which meant the dog was probably having a seizure. When an animal control officer arrived after 1:45 p.m., the dog was already dead. Every day, Salt Lake County Animal Services gets about three to six heat-related calls of animal cruelty or animals in distress, said an agency spokeswoman. (Salt Lake Tribune)

07/09/05, Sterling, CO

A young woman was charged with two misdemeanor counts of animal cruelty after leaving two puppies in her car while she and four companions shopped at a local Wal-Mart for camping supplies. After a woman reported hearing puppies crying inside the car, a Humane Society animal warden popped open the car door, where the temperature hit an estimated 120 degrees. The puppies had been left in a cardboard box on the front seat. One died but the other crawled or fell out of the box onto the shaded floor. The young woman had rescued the runts after they were shunned by their mother. (Journal-Advocate)

06/26/05, Bloomington, IL

A Texas man visiting Bloomington was arrested on a possible charge of cruelty to animals after his 2-year-old pit bull dies inside his car. The man was helping his young children at a local hotel and did not realize it was hot. The pit bull had been in the car for about 90 minutes. Although one of the car's windows was down 2-3 inches, the Sunday morning temperature was 92 degrees, leading to temperatures inside the car of 140-160 degrees. (

06/24/05, Elkhart, IN

A man was arrested on charges of animal cruelty after he left his Jack Russell terrier locked in the cab of his pickup truck for more than an hour in sweltering heat. After a bystander saw the dog lying on the floor in the pickup, barely able to raise his head, employees of a local store tried unsuccessfully to page the truck's owner, then called the police. Police picked the lock on the pickup truck and the dog was turned over to the Humane Society. The man could face up to one year in prison if convicted.. (

06/21/05, Terre Haute, IN

Mika, a drug-sniffing dog for the Vigo County Sheriff's Department, died of heat exhaustion when the air-conditioning of the police car he was waiting in failed after three hours. Mika stayed in the car while his handler, a deputy sheriff, accompanied a combative man to a local hospital's emergency room. Although the car engine was running, the air-conditioning coolant apparently leaked out through a small hole. The county sheriff said Mika's death was an accident and there would be no disciplinary action. (

06/21/05, Tucson, AZ

Eight of 35 racing greyhounds died of heat stroke after a 12-hour drive from Tucson to Mexico in an air-conditioned trailer. The man who transported them said he had no idea the Arizona Gaming Commission had issued new rules for transporting greyhounds in 1993. The new rules allow no more than 2 dogs per kennel (there were as many as 4), and require the dogs be walked and given water every 4 hours (they weren't). The man was fined $500 and his license suspended for 60 days. He plans to return to racing as soon as he can. (

05/30/05, Edmonton, AB

A woman left her small dog in the car and the dog died from the heat. Police are investigating the incident. (

05/27/05, Seattle, WA

A woman brought her dog, Bruno, to work, but left him in her parked car. Locked up for 4 hours, toward the end Bruno decided to chew his way out, tearing out the door moldings, clawing at the windows, and practically ripping the ceiling to shreds. "I thought it would be okay," said Bruno�s companion. "I came out and checked up on him twice and I thought he would be OK. I gave him some water." Because she had not broken any laws, the woman was not cited. Luckily, Bruno survived. (

06/30/04, Largo, FL

When a squad car pull into his mobile home park, a man took off running, leaving his 11-year-old golden retriever, Mickey, inside his Jeep Cherokee. The engine was off and the windows were closed. When the man returned three hours later, he found Mickey dead inside. The man was arrested on a charge of animal cruelty. There were no outstanding warrants or other reason for him to fear the police. (St. Petersburg Times)

06/16/04, Albany, NY

A police dog named Bosco died when air-conditioning failed in the squad car in which he was waiting. His body temperature was 106 degrees when he was found. He was taken to local vet where he was cooled with water, but was in severe shock and later died. The sheriff said that what once was standard policy (to leave the dog in the car) will be changed so that dogs will accompany their handler wherever they go. (Capital News 9)

06/04/04, Epping, NH

A man was charged with animal cruelty after his pit bull died from heat when he allegedly left the dog chained inside a car for several hours with no water and little air. The passenger's side window was open about 8 inches but was not enough to cool the dog. The dog's body temperature exceeded 110 degrees, according to a local veterinarian who examined the body. The animal cruelty charge against the man is a class A misdemeanor punishable by up to a year in prison and a $1,000 fine. (Sea Coast Online)

05/00/04, Weymouth, Dorset, United Kingdom

A man was ordered to pay costs of nearly �35,000 and was banned from keeping dogs for 10 years after leaving nine puppies in his car's trunk while he caught a ferry to Jersey with six others. The court was told that the dogs, discovered by a parking attendant hearing them whimpering, were "panting heavily." A policeman's evidence described the heat coming from the car as being "like a sauna." The puppies recovered and have been re-homed. (Dorset Echo)

05/00/04 (reported 06/17/04), Westmoreland County, PA

A woman faces charges for allegedly leaving her dog inside a hot car while she went into a bar. Police said it was so hot inside the car that the dog died. She faces animal cruelty charges which could have large fines and jail time. (WPXI Pittsburgh)