EUGENE, Ore. – A young husky left in a hot car at Valley River Center was rescued by a Eugene animal welfare officer Sunday afternoon.
The dog was rescued by animal welfare officer Ted Carlson after mall security officers reported that it appeared to be in distress. “Kunu” had been left inside a black Toyota Prius with the windows rolled up.
Carlson saw the dog trying to find shade inside the car, curled up on the floorboard in front of the driver seat.
Carlson first tried to unlock the car door without causing damage. After he measured the internal temperature of the car at 116 degrees, he forced entry into the vehicle and got the dog safely out of the car.
Carlson immediately gave the dog water, and the dog drank nonstop for several minutes. The dog had several drainage tubes from shaved spots on two of its legs from apparent recent surgery.
The husky was wearing dog tags with contact information for the dog’s owner, Katherine Rose Ornedo Golez, 29, of Woodland Hills, Calif. She was reportedly on her way back to California when she and a companion decided to stop and shop at the mall for approximately three hours. Their time in the mall was cut short by a phone call from a police officer assisting Carlson.
Golez was cited for animal neglect in the second degree.
Valley River Center security officers reported the incident at about 2 p.m. Sunday.
Eugene Animal Services urges pet owners to not leave their pets unattended inside a vehicle even for a few minutes. Temperatures inside a vehicle rise quickly, and can cause an animal to suffer heat stroke or brain damage.
If you see an animal in distress in a parked car call 911.