The RSPCA and other animal charities are advising that you never leave your dog alone in a car on a warm day and that if you see a dog in distress in a hot car, dial 999.
The RSPCA's website states that, "Many people still believe that it’s ok to leave a dog in a car on a warm day if the windows are left open or they’re parked in the shade, but the truth is, it’s still a very dangerous situation for the dog."
Incredibly, a car can become as hot as an oven very quickly - when it’s 22 degrees, in a car it can reach an unbearable 47 degrees within the hour.
What to do if you see a dog in a car on a warm day
The RSPCA advise that you dial 999 and that the police will then inform the RSPCA if animal welfare assistance is required. They go on to say that "if the situation becomes critical for the dog and the police are too far away or unable to attend, many people’s instinct will be to break into the car to free the dog. If you decide to do this, please be aware that without proper justification, this could be classed as criminal damage and, potentially, you may need to defend your actions in court. Make sure you tell the police what you intend to do and why. Take pictures or videos of the dog and the names and numbers of witnesses to the incident. The law states that you have a lawful excuse to commit damage if you believe that the owner of the property that you damage would consent to the damage if they knew the circumstances (section 5(2)(a) Criminal Damage Act 1971)."