WATCH ABOVE: A Vaudreuil woman has taken it upon herself to get across the message that overheated cars are no place for pets. Global’s Sarah Volstad reports.
VAUDREUIL-DORION – Environment Canada has issued a heat warning for the third day in a row, but even with these abnormally hot temperatures, some people in the Montreal area continue to leave animals and children in hot cars.
On Sunday morning, Tracy Element Rhodes was in a Walmart parking lot in Vaudreuil-Dorion when she noticed a leash on the back seat of a car.
“I then proceeded to looking inside the car, where the window was down and found a little white dog in distress, panting, laying on the floor behind the passenger seat,” said Rhodes.
She called the police, but said the officer didn’t do much to deal with the situation.
The Montreal SPCA told Global News this could be due to unclear legislation that fails to specify how law enforcers should react in these cases.
“It’s not clearly stipulated in the Criminal Code,” said Alanna Devine, spokesperson for the Montreal SPCA.
“The Criminal Code deals with animals as evidence and not as living, sentient beings, so it’s not very well suited for these types of situations.”
While Rhodes waited for the officer to show up, she snapped pictures of the suffering pup.
Christina Schizas saw the photos and was livid.
She decided to go to extremes to show how dangerous it is to leave animals in hot cars.
She sat in her vehicle for over an hour and filmed the experience.
“I blacked out in the video actually,” said Schizas.
“It’s very blatant where I black out. I end up repeating one of my sentences. I couldn’t breathe. There was a part where I had to choke back from vomiting on myself.”
The video was viewed online over 24,000 times.
Schizas said she received some negative comments about what she did, but a lot of good commentary as well.
She said she realizes now how dangerous it was and wouldn’t necessarily do it again.
“No doubt in my mind, being in that car for 15 minutes was dangerous,” said Schizas.
“I was in there for an hour. That dog was in there for an hour.”
But just how dangerous was it?
Dr. Mitch Shulman, Global News’ medical expert, said she put her life at risk.
“She could have died as a result of this,” said Shulman.
“It’s a foolish experiment, unnecessary because we’ve already documented what happens.”
Still, Schizas maintains it was worth it to get the message across.
As for the dog, Rhodes doesn’t know how the situation ended, but the pup is believed to be alright.