CALGARY -- As the hot weather begins to set in in the city of Calgary, officials have some important safety reminders for dog owners.

The Calgary Humane Society says each summer they are called to respond to many calls about dogs being left in hot vehicles.

They say in most of the cases, the owners aren't intending to harm their pet, but when animals are left inside vehicles during warm weather conditions, it could be dangerous or even deadly to the animal.

The Humane Society wants pet owners to consider the following consequences as the weather warms up:

  • Some breeds are far more susceptible to heat stroke that others and even a short time inside a hot vehicle can lead to health issues up to and including organ failure and death
  • When authorities attend these calls, they often need to break a window to remove the animal, leaving the vehicle owner with a costly bill
  • Since it's illegal to leave an animal in a hot car, the offender could be charged, have their animal seized and have to face fines, prohibitions and even jail time

Officials with the Humane Society say avoiding these situations is as easy as leaving your pet at home when you plan to go out and know you can't bring him or her with you.

"Hot car calls are frustrating for authorities because they are so avoidable. For the benefit of everyone involved: you, your pet, the responding agency, please just leave your pet at home if you are unable to remain with the pet for the duration of your outing," said Brad Nichols, the Calgary Humane Society's senior manager for animal cruelty investigations in a release.

"These are truly emergency, life and death calls. If you see something, say something."

Nichols adds the Calgary Police Service is often called to attend calls about pets locked inside vehicles.

"Our policy is to defer calls to CPS if we cannot get an officer to the location with 20 minutes. As a result, CPS attend the lion's share of these calls."

There are no details on how many calls the Humane Society has attended so far in 2020, but Nichols says they are increasing as a result of warmer weather.

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