4-month-old puppy rescued from hot vehicle in downtown Colorado Springs

2018-06-09 | Government Technology

June 08--View Gallery View Comments

A 4-month-old pit bull was rescued from a vehicle in downtown Colorado Springs as temperatures soared to 93 degrees Friday.

A passerby who saw the dog called 911, and firefighters rescued the pup, said Fire Capt. Brian Vaughan.

The dog's owner was nearby and was not cited, but the incident serves as a reminder not to leave children or pets unattended in a hot vehicle, Vaughan said.

"Don't leave any living thing in your car with the windows up!" the Fire Department tweeted. Photos show firefighters kneeling next to the puppy, giving it water.

Nationwide, 42 children died of vehicular heatstroke last year, the National Safety Council reports. "All of these deaths were preventable," the agency says.

Anyone who leaves a person or pet in a hot vehicle in Colorado can be arrested on felony or misdemeanor charges of child abuse or cruelty to animals, said police Sgt. John Koch.

A misdemeanor charge of cruelty to animals can be punishable by up 18 months in prison and a $5,000 fine. Misdemeanor child abuse that doesn't cause serious bodily injury can be punishable by up to two years in prison and a $5,000 fine.

A state law that took effect last summer allows people to break into a hot car to save a person, dog or cat. The rescuer first must exhaust every other option and believe the person or pet is in imminent danger of death or severe harm.

Friday's heat crept close to the record 95 degree high for June 8 and well above the average high of 76 degrees, say data from the National Weather Service in Pueblo. -- Contact Ellie Mulder: 636-0198

Twitter: @lemarie