Police rescued a Dachshund after it was left alone in a car in a West Covina parking lot as temperatures neared 100 degrees earlier this week, officials said.
Good Samaritans first called police Thursday afternoon after noticing the small dog sitting alone in a Volkswagen sedan in the parking lot of a Target store at 2370 S. Azusa Ave., West Covina Police Department Officer David Sifling said.
Sifling said he and other officers arrived to find store security guards and bystanders standing near the car, looking for a way to help the dog. The windows and sunroof were cracked. The dog was panting, but did not appear to be in "distress."
As captured on a police dash cam, the officer managed to use his baton to reach into the car and unlock a rear door. A woman standing nearby and watching can be seen applauding the effort.
"Luckily enough, we didn’t have to break the window," Sifling said.
A man and woman emerged from the store minutes later. The business had been making announcements over its public address system regarding the dog in the car.
The dog appeared to be OK, he said, adding that the animal had been left in the car for about 30 minutes.
Police ultimately warned the owners, who said they thought the dog would be fine since the windows had been left cracked, Sifling said.
If the dog had shown signs of injury, the owners likely would have faced charges of felony animal cruelty, Sifling added.
He reminded drivers to never leave people or pets alone in hot vehicles, even for a short time and even if the windows are left cracked.
When temperatures near 100 degrees, "Within minutes, it can reach 120 to 130 degrees in car," Sifling warned.
Only hours after the rescue at Target, Sifling said he had to warn another driver who left his dog in his car while stopping at a convenience store.
Twin babies were found dead in a vehicle in New York City on Friday after their father forgot about the infants, KTLA sister station WPIX in New York City reported.