Social media blows up over dog left in a locked van
POLICE and an alert bystander have been praised for saving the life of a distressed dog that was left locked inside a vehicle in the Coffs Harbour city centre.
Officers smashed the window of a van to rescue the fox terrier puppy from a parked vehicle in Vernon St.
Police said officers were waved down by a member of the public on Thursday around noon.
The bystander alerted police to a fox terrier pup that was visibly distressed after being locked inside the vehicle with the windows closed.
The member of the public told police the dog had been inside the vehicle for about 30 minutes, "whimpering, puffing and panting and appeared highly distressed", Traffic and Highway Patrol Command posted in its incident report.
"Due to the vehicle being parked in direct sunlight, no shade or water for the dog, police forced entry into the vehicle and removed the dog," police said.
The four-month-old dog was retrieved and given water before being taken inside a shop with air conditioning to cool it down.
The owner arrived back to the car at 12.45pm, and was questioned.
Police said the owner apologised and said he "forgot about the dog".
The dog was then seized and taken to the Coffs Harbour RSPCA animal shelter.
Police say the owner will be fined.
Readers have reacted angrily in their comments to the post.
More than 700 comments have been posted below the story on the police page.