Scarborough council has given advice to dog owners about leaving their pets in cars during hot weather.
The comment was given after a the council's dog warden and staff at Sea Life Scarborough found a dog had been left in a car for three hours in the attraction's car park.
Harry Briggs, Scarborough Borough Council Deputy Operations, Transport and Countryside Manager said: “Whilst most dog owners are very responsible with their dogs and pay particular attention to welfare issues, there are some that don’t appreciate the temperatures that can be generated inside a car at this time of year. It doesn’t even have to be particularly sunny.
"When the sun is high it can still be strong behind cloud and in the confined space of a vehicle made up of lots of glass and metal, the temperature can double within a relatively short time.
"Leaving a window open a few inches has little effect and the rule for summer should be just don’t leave dogs unattended in cars.”
On Wednesday July 10 the dog warden contacted North Yorkshire Police to report a dog that had been left inside a car at Sealife.
In a statement on their Facebook page, Sea Life Scarborough said: "We don’t let dogs in to Sealife Scarborough so please ensure you arrange suitable care for your dog if you intend to visit us.
"Today we discovered an old dog that had been left in a car for three hours.
"Our Curator managed to douse the dog in water through a slightly open back window and help cool down the dog. Our team put out 5 tanoy announcements pleading for the owners to return if they were inside the centre, but to no avail."
North Yorkshire Police confirmed officers were dispatched to the scene but the owner returned to the vehicle before their arrival and the dog was released from the car.
Sea Life added: "We will regularly be monitoring our car park throughout summer and we will not hesitate to call the police on any cars with creatures inside.
"Having a dog means you have a duty to be responsible."
Dogs heat up quickly and cool down very differently to humans and heatstroke can result in serious complications for dogs.
The Dogs Trust offers the following advice to keep dogs happy and safe in the warm weather:
- Never leaving your dogs in a car
- Not excessively exercising your dog
- Planning walks at cooler time of the day
- Always having plenty of water for your dogs
- Making sure your dog has shade to cool off in, whether inside or outside
- Trying to keep your dog out of the direct sun. Dogs can get sun burned – especially white dogs or those with little hair
- Thinking twice about any car trips with your dog and, if essential, planning time for water breaks and trying to avoid congested roads at busier times of the day
The Dogs Trust advise anyone who sees a dog in distress in a hot car to call 999.