ONTARIO, CANADA—Another pet owner was charged with ‘causing injury to an animal' after leaving their dog inside a hot vehicle in Grand Bend, Lambton County.

Officers of the Ontario Provincial Police in Lambton responded after receiving a call from a concerned citizen about a dog locked inside a parked car.

The owner was arrested upon returning to the vehicle.

The daytime temperature recorded then in the nearby Lake Huron resort community was at 77° F or 25° C.

According to a study by the University of San Francisco Department of Geosciences, a car's temperature can rise to almost 45° F in an hour.

It is not gradual, so any pets left inside cannot keep up with the sudden temperature rise.

Car Temperature

This is not the first time a pet owner has been apprehended for leaving their pets inside hot cars in Ontario.

In two incidents in 2018, two men were arrested for animal cruelty and misdemeanor after leaving their dogs in a parked car under extreme heat in a hospital parking lot and a mall, respectively.

OPP also responded to a call in Norfolk County in 2020 when a family dog was left in a car while its owner entered a Walmart store.

In 2021, a 20-year-old woman was also charged after leaving her puppy in a car for nearly three hours in a Toronto mall.

Ontario has one of the strictest laws and toughest penalties when it comes to pet abandonment in cars in Canada.

Ontario's Solicitor General Sylvia Jones said the county will not tolerate pet negligence.

“It is critically important to ensure all pets are protected from the potentially fatal effects of the hot summer sun,” said Jones. “Leaving pets to suffer in a sweltering vehicle will not be tolerated, and we have adopted tough new laws to deter this type of reckless behavior in the province.”

dog inside a hot car

In January 2020, the Provincial Animal Welfare Services (PAWS) Act came into effect, which allows officers and inspectors to enter any vehicle to rescue distressed animals.

It also includes grave penalties, like two years of jail time and a first-offense fine of $130,000 against an individual and $500,000 against a corporation.

They will also be banned from owning any other animal for life.

Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Ontario firmly stands that there is no excuse for leaving a pet unattended in a vehicle.

They urged the public to act fast when seeing an animal in distress.

“See an animal unattended in a vehicle?  Report it! Act fast. Save a life. If you spot an unattended pet in a vehicle that appears to be suffering from heat exhaustion, do not hesitate to call your local police or another first responder agency,” SPCA said.

Conversely, OPP remains firm in reminding the public, “Never leave animals in a hot car.”

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Jossana started as a TV writer in 2017, until her love for dogs gets the best of her and started writing about them instead for Top Dog Tips. Jossana is the proud mama to Xavier and to mixed-breed dogs Zorro, Budak, Lucky, and Lily, who she loves spoiling with toys and treats.