Cars Tips

20 reports of dogs left in hot cars in Wiltshire and Hampshire

Dogs in Hot Cars

As the temperatures rose over the Bank Holidayweekend, the RSPCA took 3 calls EVERY HOUR from people concerned about dogs left in hot cars.

Hampshire had the highest number of calls between Saturday 5th and Monday 7th May, with 17 reports of dogs in high temperature environments.

There were three calls about similar worries in Wiltshireacross the weekend, with 217 recorded across the country.

RSPCA campaign manager Holly Barber said:

“Many people think it will be fine just to leave their pets for a minute or two but we know that this is all it takes for temperatures inside a car to soar to dangerous levels. Dogs die in hot cars – don’t let your pet be one of the number.

“We have been doing a lot of campaigning lately about the dangers of leaving your dog in a hot car, and it’s really worrying that despite this, some people are still putting their pets in dangerous situations.

“Our main advice to owners is not to leave dogs in cars and our main advice to passers-by is to call 999 if they’re concerned about an animal in a hot environment.”


Over the Bank Holiday, the RSPCA had 7,876 throughout 2017 about animals that had been left in warm places.

They include some left outside and are suffering from the heat, to dogs in conservatories or caravans but the majority of these incidents are dogs in hot cars.

The charity runs a campaign asking people to watch out for animals suffering from heat exposure:

Dogs Die in Hot Cars Poster

The British Parking Association is the latest member to join the campaign along with groups like Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, Blue Cross, British Veterinary Association (BVA), Dogs Trust, The Kennel Club and more.


The RSPCA has given us some tips on what to do if you see a dog in a hot car:

  • In an emergency, it is best to dial 999. The RSPCA may not be able to attend quickly enough and, with no powers of entry, we’d need police assistance at such an incident.
  • If the animal is displaying any sign of heatstroke – such as panting heavily, drooling excessively, is lethargic or uncoordinated, or collapsed and vomiting – call 999 immediately.
  • If the situation becomes critical and police can’t attend, many people’s instinct is to break into the car to free the dog. But please be aware that, without proper justification, this could be classed as criminal damage. Make sure you tell the police of your intentions and take photos or footage of the dog as well as names and numbers of witnesses. 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.
  • Once removed from the car, move the dog to a shaded/cool area and pour small amounts of cool water over their body. Don’t use ice cold water as this could put the dog into shock. Allow the dog to drink small amounts of cool water. Once the dog is cool take him to the nearest vet as a matter of urgency.
  • If the dog isn’t displaying signs of heatstroke, establish how long they have been in the car and make a note of the registration. |f they are parked outside a business, ask a member of staff to make an announcement of the situation over the tannoy, if possible, and get someone to stay with the dog to monitor its condition.
  • You can call the RSPCA’s 24-hour emergency cruelty line on 0300 1234 999 for advice but, if a dog is in danger, dialling 999 should always be the first step.


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