Police dogs die in hot car
We just got a call from a reader tipping us off to this terrible story. A quick Internet search showed the Daily Mail already have it. What a tragedy. You count on the police being sensible, but even they can mess up. Those poor dogs, what a terrible way to die. Please keep you dogs cool and safe.
Two police dogs died yesterday after they were left in their handlers' car on the hottest day of the year.
The German shepherds were found dead in the vehicle parked outside Nottinghamshire Police headquarters.
It is unclear how long the dogs had been left in temperatures of up to 29C (84F). The RSPCA said temperatures inside the car could have reached 47C (116F).
The police dog handler was off duty but had called into the HQ at Sherwood Lodge, in Arnold.
Police refused to confirm what type of vehicle was involved.
The RSPCA has launched an investigation and the incident has also been reported to the Independent Police Complaints Commission. No-one has been suspended.
Nottinghamshire's Assistant Chief Constable Peter Davies said: 'This is a tragic incident and we value the important work our police dogs carry out on a daily basis.
'That is why we swiftly reported this incident to the RSPCA and we will be working with them very closely.'
Nottinghamshire vet Andrew Wilson told the BBC: 'Dehydration would have been a big factor. They wouldn't be able to cool themselves because panting wouldn't be effective any more, there would be no evaporation from the tongue.
'As the core temperature rose as a result of that, and the brain temperature rose, the brain would cease to function and various other organs would fail. This happens certainly within 30 minutes.'
Nottinghamshire Police Authority has asked the force for a guarantee that action was being taken immediately.
The authority's chairman, Councillor John Clarke, said: 'This is a truly tragic incident. I am deeply disturbed to learn of the deaths of these police dogs, which play such a vital role in the fight against crime.
'The RSPCA has been informed and will, I am sure, carry out a thorough and speedy investigation.
'The authority has asked to be provided at the appropriate time with a full report into the circumstances.'
A police spokesman said: 'Nottinghamshire Police reported the death of two German shepherd police dogs to the RSPCA on Tuesday, June 30, after they were discovered at force headquarters at 2.15pm.
'The incident has also been voluntarily referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission.
'The welfare of all animals owned by Nottinghamshire Police is of paramount importance and we endeavour to take every measure possible to ensure their well-being and safety.'
An RSPCA spokeswoman warned: 'When it's sunny or warm outside, we would urge dog owners not to leave a dog in a car.
'It can cause health problems and prove fatal. Temperatures can rise to 47C in a car quite quickly and that is enough to kill a dog.'Under the Animal Welfare Act 2006, anyone found guilty of causing unnecessary suffering to an animal can face up to six months in prison or a fine of up to £20,000.