NOTE: An update to this story can be found here.
Cultus Lake firefighters and RCMP freed a dog from a vehicle parked at the Cultus Lake Water Park Thursday afternoon.
The temperature at the time was 29 degrees.
The call came in just after 3 p.m.
There were unconfirmed reports that the dog had been in the vehicle for six hours.
Efforts were underway to locate the vehicle owner.
RCMP were asked to transport the animal to the SPCA.
The BC SPCA offers advice for people who find animals trapped in vehicles, but stress they “definitely do not encourage people to break into cars themselves.”
“For dogs in hot cars we ask people to call our BC SPCA animal cruelty hotline,” said Lorie Chortyk, BC SPCA spokeswoman, noting the number is 1-855-622-7722. “Once they have a person on the phone, they ask a series of questions to determine the condition of the animal (no distress, mild distress, distress) and our response would be based on the condition of the dog and what the scenario is.”
If the animal is not in distress, the SPCA asks people to inquire in a nearby store, and have the vehicle and licence plate paged to try to get the owner to return to the vehicle.
Chortyk told Black Press earlier that every year the SPCA responds to hundreds of calls about animals in distress in hot cars.
“Many people don’t realize that a dog can die in a hot car in as little as ten minutes, even with the windows cracked open and in the shade,” she added. “It would be unthinkable for us to put our pets in an oven and turn on the heat, but that is exactly what people do when they leave their dog in a car on a warm day. Sadly, we have seen these situations end tragically, and it is completely preventable. We urge people to leave their pets at home on warm days.”
Watch www.theprogress.com for more information as it becomes avaible.