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If an animal left in a car is panting for breath it may be starting to suffer from heatstroke, which can kill an animal very quickly. Dogs can die from heatstroke in a minimum of 20 minutes.
Leaving windows open or putting a bowl of water in the car is not enough.
Borough Council Officers can take such steps as are immediately necessary to alleviate the animal’s suffering, working with Staffordshire Police and RSPCA Officers.
We may remove an animal, using force if necessary, and prosecute the owner responsible if we believe that the animal is suffering unnecessarily - Animal Welfare Act 2006, sect 18 (6)
If you are concerned about a dog which appears to be in distress in a car you can contact:
Make a note of the car’s colour, model, make and number plate before you call. If the car is in a shop’s car park ask the shop to page the owner over the intercom.
Further guidance is available from the RSPCA at www.rspca.org.uk