There is always a danger in leaving an animal inside of a car — even if the windows are cracked — and as the weather becomes warmer, the risk for those animals climbs even higher. Last Thursday in Key West, Florida, four Pit Bull puppies were rescued from what would have been a tragic outcome had they been left in a hot car much longer.
The pit bull puppies, all 10–weeks–old, were reported to have been left inside of a beat–up Crown Victoria sedan in a parking lot behind a housing complex. A window was left cracked, however, as The Humane Society of the United States of America (HSUS) notes:
Rolling down the windows has been shown to have little effect on the temperature inside a car.
In fact, on a 72 degree day, the inside of a car can become 116 degrees within an hour and on an 80 degree day, the temperature inside of a car rises to 99 degrees within only ten minutes.
With those numbers, it’s almost unimaginable to think that these puppies — on a day when it registered 82 degrees and 88 degrees with the heat index — were left in this car for over eight hours.
Witnesses told police that they had noticed the car in that parking lot since about 8:30 a.m. Around 1:20 p.m., Officers Frank Betz and Todd Stevens responded to an anonymous call about dogs in distress.
When officers arrived, they discovered that, not only were the dogs trapped in the car, the pups had no food or water and were wading in their own feces. Surprisingly, the dogs are in relatively good health! On Friday, they were taken to a veterinarian for a full check–up, as well as treatment for skin conditions.
Matt Royer, the Director of Operations at the Florida Keys Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (FKSPCA), commented that the puppies are “sweet little things” and that “[t]hey’ll all be fine, they just look rough.”
As far as prosecuting the person(s) responsible for this animal cruelty, no police reports were available last Friday, however, Matt did have some further information that he sared with Miami Herald. He said that the car belongs to a couple who the FKSPCA has dealt with before over their treatment of puppies. One of the alleged offenders is Jaboa Brown, who is currently in jail stemming from an arrest four days prior to people discovering the Pit Bull puppies in his car.
Currently, the puppies are considered evidence in a criminal investigation. As such, they are not up for adoption nor are they owned by the FKSPCA.
Without someone speaking up and taking action upon noticing these puppies, they would have surely died as a direct result of being left in a car. The HSUS advises people to take the following steps if they see an animal in a hot car.
– Take down the car’s make, model and license plate number.
– If there are businesses nearby, notify their managers or security guards and ask them to make an announcement to find the car’s owner.
– If the owner can’t be found, call the non–emergency number of the local police or animal control and wait by the car for them to arrive.