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Florida Police Make New Effort to Prevent Dogs Left in Hot Cars

A billboard high above Florida's I-95 reminds people to not leave dogs in hot cars.

A billboard high above Florida’s I-95 reminds people to not leave dogs in hot cars.

The Boynton Beach Police Department in southern Florida receives multiple calls every day from citizens concerned about a dog left alone in a hot car. Appalled by the number of unnecessary dog deaths, BBPD reached out to citizens through social media, looking for ways to get the word out that dogs die in hot cars.

The result of that outreach is a new billboard standing high above Interstate highway 95 in Palm Beach County.

Stephanie Slater, Public Information Officer at Boynton Beach Police Department, told WPTV that leaving any animal unattended in a vehicle is a violation of Palm Beach County ordinance and if caught you could receive a citation.

But, she says, a citation shouldn’t be the biggest concern.

“It’s kind of like putting a turkey in the oven, it’s going to cook,” said veterinarian Dr. Susan Baker. “They think I’m just going to run into the store and grab a loaf of bread and come right back out, but the minute ordeal turns into an hour ordeal.”

Most of the time, Baker explained, by the time help arrives, it’s too late to save the dog.

If the billboard reaches just one person, and saves just one dog’s life, it will have been worth it.

The Boynton Beach Police Department hope that other cities will follow suit with similar initiatives. And, they urge anyone that sees an animal left inside of a car to call police or animal control for help.

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