Resourceful Labrador Saved From Hot Car; Let’s Not Make Dogs Send Out SOS’s

Max’s resourcefulness may have saved his life. When the chocolate Lab was left in the car on a 90-degree day, he honked the horn until his guardian came to let him out. Apparently, she had taken the dog with her while she went shopping and then somehow forgot to bring him inside when she returned home. While she was unloading packages, the poor dog laid on the horn until she went outside to see what all the noise was about. Max had been trapped in the sweltering heat for about an hour. I have no idea how his guardian could have possibly forgotten him in the car, but I also can’t imagine why he was in there while she was shopping in the first place. Leaving dogs inside cars, even for just a couple of minutes, is dangerous. 

The woman was clearly concerned; she’s likely remorseful and she’s hopefully wiser now too. She quickly took action once she realized what had happened. She gave Max cold water, wet him down with towels, and rushed him to the veterinary clinic. He was suffering from heat exhaustion, but he didn’t sustain any more serious injuries.

Other dogs aren’t so lucky. Since I wrote about the two dogs who were baked to death in a police cruiser around this time last year—and pointed out that, even on a 73°F day, the inside of a parked car can reach around 100ºF in 10 minutes and 120ºF in 30 minutes, and that dogs can succumb to heatstroke in just 15 minutes—numerous dogs have died or suffered close calls after being left in parked cars.

Early this month, a yellow Labrador died after being left inside a car in the parking lot of Costco on a 104-degree day. (On a 78-degree day, a car parked in the sun can reach 160 degrees in minutes!) Around the same time, a two-year old pit bull died when he was locked in a vehicle when it was 86-degrees outside. An alarming number of ther dogs have recently come close to death inside hot cars, and others have died from being left outside in hot weather.

“Don’t Let Your Dog Get Hot Under the Collar” leaflets, which can be placed on vehicles to remind people never to leave unattended animals inside, are still available  from PETA. For more ways to keep dogs cool see

Leaving a dog in a hot car is thoughtless, neglectful, and deadly—but  not doing anything to help an overheated dog  is inexcusable too. Please intervene whenever you see a dog in a car in hot weather—and take steps to help prevent that from happening in the first place. Dogs shouldn’t have to send out SOS’s to be rescued from hot cars.


Kye J.
Sue L6 years ago

Impose a hefty fine ie $50,000 and this will soon stop these animal abusing bastards from leaving their animals in hot cars to bake to death with windows wound up.I have a policy and that is when I see an animal trapped in a locked car with windows wound up suffering on a hot day, I will smash the car window. I have smashed 3 car windows so far.Morons that subject poor animals to this animal abuse don't deserve to have a pet.Once a person has their car window smashed and a hefty repair bill it makes them think twice about inflicting this abuse again on a poor defenceless animal.The RSPCA in Australia advises that a pet can die within less than 8 minutes on a hot day in a car with windows wound up.It is never ok to leave an animal in a car alone and go shopping etc.This is a death sentence

Marguerite White
Marguerite White6 years ago

So glad another dog was saved by its clever wit of honking horn,must of watched its owner doing the same,arent dogs intelligent.There have been so many wonderful stories of other animals acting on impulse and some humans think that animals are dumb whose dumb now?

Carmen Bouwhuis Jansen

Horrible, brr grrr

Annmari Lundin
Annmari Lundin7 years ago

I once broke a window in a car with an almost dead dog inside. The temperature outside was in the 90s and I can only imagine how hot it must have been inside. I and a few others helped carry the dog outside, put her in the shadows under a tree, covered her with bath towels and gave her some water. When the owner returned some two hours later, he was met by the police and told his dog was at the animal hospital being treated for heat exhaustion. First thing on the dogowners mind was the broken window and he began complaining about it and wanted to press charges against me. (I was still at the site.)The police shook their heads and placed the stupid and ignorant man under arrest and told him that I have acted in an emergency situation and wouldn't be charged. But the dogowner on the other hand faced charges of animal abuse, etc. I don't understand how you can leave an animal or a child in a hot or freezing cold car for any amount of time!

Victoria Day
Victoria Day7 years ago

Wow, would you leave your child in the car too? Come on!

Diana C.
Diana C7 years ago

It's beyond me why stupid people take the dog when they are going shopping and leave the poor dog in the car. Once I asked a stupid woman who had left the dog in the car why she did that and she said "he likes being with me" I said "well, he wasn't with you while you were in the store, he was alone and frightened in a car in a parking lot, and in danger of being hurt, he would have been safe in familiar territory at home", Some people are so unbelievably STUPID.

johan l.
paul l7 years ago

Living in a warm climate like S.Africa, one never ever takes his/her dog shopping!
Crime prevents you from leaving the windows open, so there is no way you can allow your dog to die of heat in the car unless you are the most sadistic of person!

Sue L.
Sue L7 years ago

I am so glad Max was able to get his owner's attention. It is appalling the number of CHILDREN, let alone dogs, who are killed each year by being left in the car. We must all watch out for each other as there are too many people who don't have the common sense to know better.

Pinke A.
Pinke A7 years ago

Some times there is no other way.When we go to the country and stop for the foodshop.Dog must be with us. But we allways leave the car in the shadow,windows compleatly open,and it will only take 10-20 minutes.(Most of the times my hubby stays with the dog and takes him to walk).We seldom have here as hot as you guys.
Clever dog the Labrador:)

Isabelle J.
Isabelle J7 years ago

Too much stupid people on earth.