Thursday, 2 July 2009

Sad Fate of two Police Dogs

Police dogs die in parked vehicle

Despite all the warnings coming from the dog community, two police dogs died this week after being left in a car. The handler was off duty, and it's unknown if they were in a private car or an offical dog vehicle.

Dogs Trust, the UK’s largest dog welfare charity, is saddened to hear about the death of two German Shepherd dogs who were found in a vehicle parked outside the Headquarters of Nottinghamshire Police on Tuesday.

Whilst the cause of death is still to be determined, the charity would like to remind dog owners and police dog handlers that leaving your dog locked in a car can prove fatal, particularly during a heatwave. It can take just twenty minutes for a dog to die and temperatures can reach over 40 degrees in some vehicles.

Dogs Trust has compiled three essential tips for owners to help their dogs beat the heat:

Walk your dog in the morning and evening when the weather is cooler and make sure shady spots and drinking water are available.

Clip the fur of particularly hairy hounds and apply canine sun cream to areas most likely to burn: ears, nose, and belly. Human suncream can be toxic so buy a special pet version from your local pet shop.

Be extra vigilant with older and overweight dogs as they are more prone to overheat. In a real emergency wet your dog thoroughly and use a household fan to blow cool air over their head and body. Seek urgent veterinary attention.

If your dog shows signs of distress – such as excessive panting, blueness of the tongue or collapse contact your local vet immediately.

Today I had a chat with the owner of a Bulldog I walk. Even 8am in the morning is beginning to be too hot for him, so if this heat keeps up we've discussed shorter walks at an earlier time.

It's not difficult. How can a police officer, trained to handle dogs, have any excuse for what happened to those poor dogs?

NEVER leave your dog in the car in warm weather. Just twenty minutes waiting in a hot car can prove fatal.