Anyone with a lick of common sense and experience with warm weather knows that a car left in the sun can become dangerously hot in a matter of minutes. When Adrienne LaFrance saw a young German shepherd panting away in a sweltering car in a grocery store parking lot, she alerted store staff, who called police. She then castigated the neglectful owner when she returned, and posted photos of her vehicle on Facebook.
LaFrance was popping into a Sprouts Farmers Market before work when she noticed the poor pup inside of a BMW parked outside. It was 90 degrees and sunny. She didn’t know how long the dog had been in there, but knew that he wouldn’t last very long.
“There was a dog watching the doors. He was panting,” she told News 13.
Dog-loving LaFrance, who has a rescue of her own, immediately dashed inside the store and notified staff, who assured her that the police would be called. She went back outside to monitor the dog and take photos.
Ten minutes later the dog’s owner returned to her vehicle, and LaFrance confronted her.
“She asked me why I was taking a photograph of her car and I said, ‘Well, you left your dog in the car – it’s inappropriate behavior,’” she said.
“I was hoping somebody that she knew that would have an effect on her behavior would see it and possibly say something to her,” she explained.
Though New Mexico doesn’t have a law specifically outlawing leaving pets in hot cars, the law in Albuquerque states that:
Animals left unattended in cars, vans or RVs must have adequate ventilation to prevent the temperature in the vehicle from rising high enough such that any reasonable Person would know that the Animal would suffer from heat exposure. During the warmer months, no amount of ventilation will keep the car from getting too hot. If the Mayor determines that an Animal in a vehicle is in immediate danger, the Mayor may enter the vehicle by whatever means necessary, without being liable to the owner of the vehicle, and seize the Animal.
Fuming, LaFrance posted the photos to her Facebook page. Because she had to get to work, she could not wait around for police, and doesn’t know if they ever showed up.
“I love my dog and I would never subject him to torture, and it’s torture,” the impassioned woman said.
She told me today that if it came down to it, she would have broken the window to save the dog’s life.