Dog deaths a reminder to keep pets at home during hot days
Posted May 14, 2014
Updated May 15, 2014
Wake Forest, N.C. — A Franklinton woman faces animal cruelty charges after two dogs died in her car Wednesday morning.
Wake Forest police said Jennifer King, 34, left the animals in her vehicle for nearly three hours while she was inside the Walmart at 2114 S. Main St. in Wake Forest.
Police were called to the store around 11:30 a.m. after receiving a report that the dogs were dead.
Even though the outside temperature was about 80 degrees, the heat inside the car was more than 120 degrees when the dogs died, investigators said.
Even if the air conditioner is left on, it's never good to leave an animal inside a car because it won't help cool the animal, authorities said. Dogs, for example, have an internal body temperature of 102 degrees and it's difficult for them to cool themselves.
"It's a heat stroke, essentially, is what they succumb to," said Dr. Ginger Tran with Heritage Animal Hospital in Wake Forest. "In a car with windows, even if they are cracked, the temperature can increase over 15 degrees just within 5 to 10 minutes."
In that same amount of time, a dog's temperature can jump 20 to 25 degrees in 10 minutes, she added.
Tran said Wednesday's incident is a reminder to dog owners regarding the danger of leaving pets in cars as temperatures become warmer.
"Leave them at home," she said.
Wake Forest police urge anyone who sees an animal inside a car to call them at 919-554-6150 rather than tracking down the vehicle's driver.