The six dogs who died while in the care of dog walker Emma Paulsen were remembered at a ceremony last June in Langley. Their deaths a year ago are a good reminder to people not to keep dogs in vehicles as the weather gets warmer.

The six dogs who died while in the care of dog walker Emma Paulsen were remembered at a ceremony last June in Langley. Their deaths a year ago are a good reminder to people not to keep dogs in vehicles as the weather gets warmer.

Patti Dale animal shelter issues annual hot dog advisory

May to September are dangerous months for pets to be left in vehicles, says shelter manager, Sean Baker

With the weather warming, Langley Animal Protection Society (LAPS) reminds people to leave dogs at home, not in vehicles.

“It has been much busier than usual with dogs in [hot] vehicles,” said Sean Baker, Langley animal shelter manager. “This is probably for two reasons: The weather has been nicer than usual and more people are on alert because of the six dogs that died last year.”

In May 2014, Delta dog walker Emma Paulsen left six dogs in her hot truck while she shopped. They all died of heat exhaustion. She concocted a story about the dogs having been stolen at the Brookswood off-leash park, but had actually dumped  their bodies in a ditch in Abbotsford. She was later convicted of animal cruelty, and sentenced to six months in jail and given a lifetime ban from having a business involving the care of animals.

Baker has a warning for dog owners.

“Any time the weather starts to get consistently above 18 degrees and sunny, we encourage dog owners to leave their dogs at home,” said Baker. “In the direct sun, a vehicle can get very uncomfortable very quickly for any dog.  Even in the shade in the mid-20s, a bad situation can result sooner than most people think.”

Baker said most people who leave their dogs in their vehicles tell them they did so because they thought that they would be back in a couple of minutes.

“However, they underestimate or get delayed and this turns 10 minutes into 30 or more. It is always best not to take your dog with you if you don’t have to between May and September.”

If you see a dog in distress, call the   animal shelter at 604-857-5055 or the RCMP non-emergency line at 604-532-3200.