Two dogs left in a hot SUV and rescued by officers were released back to their owners on Tuesday, according to Seattle Animal Shelter records.
Seattle Police responded to the parked SUV near Pier 55 last Sunday after some Good Samaritans noticed the dogs maybe in distress.
Police along with enforcement officers from the Seattle Animal Shelter said the temperature inside the car was 98 degrees. Officers were forced to break the rear window of the SUV to rescue the two dogs inside.
The dogs, identified as a great Pyrenees mix and a pit bull mix, were taken to the Seattle Animal Shelter to be checked out by their veterinarian staff. Both dogs showed signs of heat stress.
The owners received two citations under Washington State law that makes it illegal to leave an animal in an unattended motor vehicle. A criminal investigation is still ongoing.
Ann Graves, acting director of the Seattle Animal Shelter said pet owners should always plan their outings ahead of time when traveling with a pet. If a business does not allow pets in, it’s better just to leave your pet at home, Graves said.
Even leaving your pet inside your car while you run into the store could lead to enforcement officers being called out. “A person who walks by a car and sees a pet that could be in distress likely won’t know how long the dog has been inside the car.” Graves said. Leaving your pet at home avoids an unnecessary police or shelter staff response.
The Humane Society of the United States offers additional tips regarding dogs in hot cars.