Police officers were called to a Langley shopping centre parking lot where RCMP smashed in an SUV window to rescue a dog. The reported dog turned out to be a stuffed toy. Supplied

Window smashed to rescue dog from SUV a false alarm

For the second time in one week, a reported dog trapped in a vehicle turned out to be a stuffed toy

For the second time in a week in B.C., would-be rescuers smashed in the window of a vehicle to save a dog from overheating, only to discover what they’d seen was actually a stuffed animal.

The Langley Animal Protection Society and Langley RCMP were called out to the Willowbrook Shopping Centre parking lot this afternoon, after a bystander witnessed the driver place what appeared to be a white poodle in the back of a red SUV underneath a privacy screen, said Jayne Nelson, director of LAPS.

Two other women reported hearing a dog barking and whining, then go silent. They figured it had been inside the vehicle for about 30 minutes.

The temperature was hovering around 30 degrees at the time.

Based on this information, RCMP decided to smash in the window of the SUV. Inside, they found one large and two smaller stuffed animals.

“They did look through the whole vehicle just to ensure that they hadn’t missed anything, that the animal hadn’t managed to crawl away under the seat or something, but there was no dog in the car,” Nelson said.

“That’s a good outcome. It’s unfortunate, but we were happy there was no dog in distress inside the vehicle.”

Despite the incident being a false alarm, Nelson still recommends people call in if they think an animal is in distress, especially with the current heat wave in the Lower Mainland.

Environment Canada has issued a hot weather warning, saying the region faces “a prolonged stretch of well above normal temperatures (that) is expected to persist into early next week.”

“Better safe than sorry, and sometimes it can be hard to tell from long distances,” Nelson said.

“Unfortunately, this still happens, people are still leaving their pets inside of cars, and we are still responding to calls. We are definitely encouraging people to take the ‘no hot pet pledge.’ Keep your pets at home where they are safe and comfortable.”

On Saturday, a similar incident happened in Victoria, where a couple smashed in the window of a car thinking a dog was dead or dying inside.

The dog turned out to be a stuffed toy named Rory.

READ MORE: From hot dog to not dog: stuffed toy prompts car break in

As of July 3, the BC SPCA reported that it had received 460 calls about dogs locked in hot cars.

The organization does not recommend that bystanders break the windows of vehicles to release the pets in distress. Only RCMP, local police and the BC SPCA Special Constables can lawfully enter a vehicle to help a pet.

If you do see an animal in distress, call a local animal control agency, police, or the BC SPCA hotline at 1-855-622-7722. Note the licence plate, vehicle colour, make and model, and ask nearby businesses to page for the vehicle owner.

READ MORE: If you see a dog in a hot car, don’t break in: SPCA

According to Mountain View Veterinary Hospital in Langley, when outside temperatures are at 21 degrees Celsius, it takes only 10 minutes for a car to heat up to 31.6 degrees, and 30 minutes to heat up to 40 degrees.

And on a hot summer day, outside temperatures of 29 degrees can heat up a car to 40 degrees in only 10 minutes, and 48.3 degrees in 30 minutes.

Temperatures this hot can cause heat stroke, brain damage or even death to pets locked inside.

READ MORE: BC SPCA receives 400 reports of dogs in hot cars so far this year



Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Parksville residents hear compelling tales from recovering young addicts

Speakers emphasize need for detox and treatment centre, shelter in the area

REVIEW: ‘Grace and Glorie’ a moving tale of death and friendship

Two women convey characters convincingly and with humour

Jordie Lunn, world-renowned mountain biker from Parksville, dies in accident

The 36-year-old was with friends trail riding in Cabo San Lucas when the accident happened

Island man restores 1962 Qualicum Beach fire truck he bought for $1

Vintage vehicle in working order and ready to hit the road

B.C.’s rural paramedic program expands, with home support

Advanced care ambulance staff added for six communities

BC Ferries sees steady traffic of post-Thanksgiving weekend travellers

Ferries filling up fast, sailing waits at some terminals

Canadian Snowbirds plane crashes before air show in Atlanta

Pilot lands safely after ejecting from jet

Singh says NDP would form coalition with the Liberals to stop Tories

Singh was in a Liberal-held riding Sunday afternoon in Surrey where he was pressed about his post-election intentions

‘My heart goes out to the mother’: B.C. dad reacts to stabbing death of Ontario boy

Carson Crimeni, who was also 14, was bullied relentlessly, his dad says

BC Ferries filling up fast with post-Thanksgiving weekend travellers

Monday anticipated to be busiest day of the weekend

‘Save the kids!’ Dorian survivor tells the harrowing story of his Canadian wife’s death

Family held a funeral and placed Alishia Liolli’s remains in a niche at a cemetery in Windsor, Ont.

Okanagan woman, 91, votes at advance polls despite broken hip, shoulder and wrist

Angela Maynard has voted in almost every election during her lifetime

Heiltsuk Nation open first Big House in 120 years in northern B.C.

Opening means the community now has an appropriate space for spiritual and ceremonial events

Most Read