With temperatures soaring near triple digits, police say people who
don’t protect their pets from the heat could face criminal charges.
A 54-year-old Burbank woman was cited Tuesday on suspicion of
animal cruelty after allegedly leaving her Pomeranian tied in the
yard with no shade, food or water. When officers arrived after
receiving a call from a concerned neighbor, they found the dog
tightly muzzled. Sgt. William Berry said the muzzle made the
situation even more dangerous for the dog.
“With the muzzle on, it couldn’t pant and could easily overheat,”
Animal control officers took the dog to a veterinarian for
evaluation and police said it would be up to a judge whether or not
the pet is returned to the owner.
As troubling as such incidents are, Animal Control Officer
Florante Pagador said they are not uncommon during the hot summer
Officers receive between two and three calls a week about pets in
danger of overheating, usually from being left inside of cars while
people are shopping, Pagador said.
“We haven’t had a [pet die from heat stroke] in several years, but
we’ve had some left inside a car in really bad shape,” he said.
When animal control officers receive a call about a dog locked in
a vehicle, they check the temperature inside with a thermometer they
carry and may have police force a door open to get the animal out.
Pagador said people often think they can get out of a store before
the animal will be harmed, but Berry said it does not take very long
for the temperature to become dangerous for a pet.
“Even with the windows open, if a car is not in the shade it can
get over 100 degrees in there,” he said.