ROUND ROCK, Texas (KXAN) — You hear often about the dangers of leaving dogs in hot cars.
An unusual situation in Round Rock, Texas, shows how dangerous this can be — even if a car is running.
Round Rock Police said a dog died in a parked car after an officer arrested the owner on suspicion of DWI. The department said the car was initially running and the air conditioning was on.
According to the Round Rock Police Department, officers responded to a report of a reckless driver around 12:15 p.m. Sunday. Police arrested a woman, whom WFXR News’ sister station, KXAN, is not naming at this time.
During the officers’ DWI investigation, they left the dog inside the suspect’s car with the engine running and the air conditioning on. However, the car’s engine, unbeknownst to the officer, turned off on its own. When animal control arrived, police said the dog was found dead in the car.
Round Rock Police said its protocol in such a situation is to either call animal control or release the animal to a family member if there’s someone at the scene.
In this case, police said an officer contacted the on-call animal control officer to pick up the dog, and an officer remained at the scene until animal control arrived.
The brother of the arrested woman called KXAN on Monday asking for answers.
“Very very sad that he’s no longer with us,” said Benjamin, referring to his sister’s husky, Landa. KXAN is not revealing Benjamin’s last name at this time.
Police called this “an unfortunate incident” and are investigating to figure out what happened. The department is also still working to determine what happened to the suspect’s vehicle.
The department emphasized the officer did not turn the suspect’s car off. The dog was sent for a necropsy to determine the official cause of death.
Benjamin said his sister is devastated.
“She understands that this situation — she put herself in a very bad place,” he said. “But at the same time, she shouldn’t have to worry about the life and welfare of her dog when she’s been detained.”