Yesterday might have been April Fool's Day but Riverside County Animal Services says this story was NO joke.
Palm Desert Animal Services received a call yesterday about 2pm about a small dog left inside a car.
When Animal Services Officer Daniel Mora arrived, he located the dog inside a locked black Escalade parked at The Living Desert Zoo & Gardens. When he took the car's interior temperature with an infrared thermometer it registered at 104 degrees! NOT good for any dog, espcially a little one!
When Officer Mora and a Palm Desert Police officer opened the door to retrieve the little guy, they found him in a crate filled with: two frozen burritos and five, frozen, wrapped Drumstick ice cream cones. It looks like the owner thought those items would be sufficient enough to keep the pup cool. FYI...IT'S NOT!
Officer Mora took the panting pup to his air-conditioned vehicle and left a notice on the Escalade's windshield letting the owner know their dog would be in the care of Animal Services and that they were being cited for leaving an animal unattened in a motor vehicle.
The pup was brought to Coachella Valley Animal Campus in Thousand Palms for an examination. Surprisingly, to the shock of the staff there, the 3-year-old chihuahua was not overheated.
In a press release from Riverside County Animal Servies, Registered Veterinary Technician Emily Vialpando said:
“It really was so bizarre that the dog was not suffering. Upon examination, he didn’t exhibit any signs consistent with heat stress.”
Coincidentially, yesterday was 'National Burrito Day,' despite that, Vialpando said:
“In all seriousness, it was about 90 degrees in parts of the Coachella Valley today, meaning the inside temperature of the car was much higher. And frozen burritos are not going to stay frozen for long when it gets this hot.” (She said the items were lukewarm when officers retrieved the pup.)
Animal Services Director Julie Bank said she can appreciate the ingenuity of using frozen items to provide a cooling effect for a pet, but she advised against such practices.
“It’s not a laughing matter if the pet suffered or, even worse, perished from being left in a car for who knows how long. Our advice is always to leave your pet at home when running errands or visiting attractions.”
Let's hope the little guy's owner understands what he did wrong, or the little guy finds a new home!