It appears some people still need to find out the hard way that locking dogs inside hot cars is not OK.
Vancouver police said officers were called to a parking lot near Vanier Park around 4 p.m. Saturday for reports of two dogs inside a car.
The dogs were showing signs of distress, police said, and the windows weren’t left open.
Officers were forced to rescue the pair of pooches and gave them water to cool off.
“They were quite friendly little guys once they cooled off,” Sgt. Sandra Glendinning said in an email.
Once the owner returned to the vehicle, police issued a $250 ticket “and a lecture on pet ownership,” according to a tweet from Glendinning.
The ticket was issued for “enclosing dog without air ventilation and high temperature.”
Temperatures Saturday afternoon reached a high of 21 degrees, according to Environment Canada data.
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Police said the BC SPCA normally responds to calls of animals in hot cars, but staff were not available and officers had to take over.
The SPCA says it only takes minutes for a car to heat up enough to become dangerous and even fatal to a dog left inside. That’s even if the car is parked in the shade with the windows open.
Dogs can’t release heat through sweat like humans, experts say, and panting becomes less and less effective as the car heats up.
The small sweat glands inside their paws also aren’t enough to properly cool them down.
The SPCA wants people to call their hotline and alert staff to the situation, along with a licence plate number and vehicle description. Do not break the car window yourself, they warn.
The best thing to do, police and the SPCA say, is to simply leave dogs and other pets at home.
—With files from Kristen Robinson