By Corey Crisan SYRACUSE (NCC NEWS) – Summertime in Central New York means taking the pups out to play. Your canine companions may enjoy a car ride every now and then, but leaving them unattended inside your vehicle can prove costly.
One recent case in Georgia involved the rescue of two dogs who were locked inside a 167-degree car in a movie theater parking lot. These cases, fortunately so, are uncommon throughout the country, including Central New York, where only 5 cases have been reported in 2017.
So what do you do when you see a dog trapped inside a car on a hot day?
Central New York SPCA Animal Cruelty Investigator Scott Bodah told NCC News the signs of distress a dog will express if locked inside a hot car for too long.
“Excessive panting, a lot of drooling, then the body starts to shut down,” he said. “(If) the dog is lethargic, it’s not able to stand up, if the dog looks almost like it’s intoxicated or out of whack… If it’s having trouble standing… If it’s convulsing, then you’re really way down the road of heat exhaustion.”
Bodah also spoke of the proper procedure to follow if a dog is spotted with these symptoms.
“Honestly, it’s real, real easy. You would just call 9-1-1 and have the police come. If the police aren’t able to get there quickly for whatever reason, I guess you as a citizen have to make a decision,” he noted.
If a good Samaritan does decide to take action themselves, they should be cautious of potential repercussions. Under the Agriculture and Market Law, Article 26, 353-D, police officers are completely exempt from liability charges by the car owner. A citizen, though acting in good faith, is not exempt if they choose to break into the car.