“Don’t. Just don’t.”
The Pensacola Police Department was crystal clear in its warning about leaving dogs in hot cars in a Facebook post June 28.
Officers had just rescued a tiny puppy, who was locked inside a hot vehicle on Tuesday afternoon. They shattered the car’s passenger window to rescue the pup.
“If you leave your dog in a hot car and that dog is suffering, we will do whatever we have to do to free him. Or her. Doesn’t matter, we like both kinds of dogs,” the department said on Facebook.
Weather reports show the temperature was as high as 92 degrees on Tuesday in Pensacola, Fla.
“On a 90-degree day, the interior temperature can reach as high as 160 degrees in less than 10 minutes,” according to the PETA animal welfare website. Even on a a 78-degree day, the temperature inside a parked car can soar to between 100 and 120 degrees in just minutes, PETA said.
The Pensacola police used humor to get its point across about rescuing dogs in hot cars: “We will drive your pooch to the caring folks at the Escambia County Animal Shelter and we will drop you off with the caring folks at the Escambia County Detention Facility.
“You will both receive attention, food, and shelter, albeit different kinds,” the department wrote.
People on social media called Pensacola’s police officers heroes:
“You are heroes! Thank you for saving this sweet little baby! I am sorry you had to give him/her back to the owners with the mother, understandable. I hope they learned from this,” wrote a Facebook user.
“Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!” wrote another.
As of June 30, the post has received more than 15,000 Facebook reactions with up to 11,000 shares.
The police later wrote a message saying the puppy was fine, but offered no further details.
PETA said animals can sustain brain damage or even die from heatstroke in just 15 minutes in a hot car. “Beating the heat is extra tough for dogs because they can only cool themselves by panting and by sweating through their paw pads.”
If you see an animal in a hot, parked car, PETA recommends the following:
– Take down the car’s color, model, make, and license plate number.
– Have the owner paged in the nearest buildings, or call local humane authorities or police.
– Have someone keep an eye on the dog.
– Don’t leave the scene until the situation has been resolved.