What To Do When You See A Dog Left In A Hot Car

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What To Do When You See A Dog Left In A Hot Car

It will happen again this summer! Someone will leave their pet in their car on a hot day with the windows rolled up creating a greenhouse effect inside. Although it is commonly reported that a good Samaritan broke the car window to free the pet, this is not the first thing to consider as this may lead you to unwanted consequences. Reasonable steps must be taken before destruction of property …

If you see an animal that may be suffering from heat exhaustion, and the owner can’t be quickly located, enlist the help of a parking attendant, security guard or nearby police officer, or call the OHS at 613-725-1532.

When calling to report an animal in a hot car, please provide the following information:

  • Caller’s name and phone number
  • How long has the caller seen the vehicle parked there?
  • Get the exact location of the vehicle
  • Get the make, model and colour of the vehicle
  • Get the license plate number
  • Are the windows up or down?
  • Is the vehicle parked in the sun or shade?
  • Is the vehicle running?
  • Is the dog sitting or laying down?
  • Is the dog panting?
  • Can the caller knock on the window? How does the dog react?
  • What type of dog is it? What does it look like?
  • Where is the dog in the vehicle?
  • Is there water in the vehicle for the dog?
  • What’s the legislation involved?

It is against the law to leave a pet unattended in a parked vehicle in a manner that endangers the health or safety of the animal. Under the Ontario SPCA Act, OSPCA investigators have the authority of a police officer when enforcing those laws pertaining to animals. The Act permits the investigator to issue a written order to the owner of the animal or to take the necessary steps to relieve the animal from distress. Non-compliance of an OSPCA order may result in the animal being removed from private property (including parked vehicles). Learn more here.

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