The heat index had just reached 109 degrees Fahrenheit when the Manor Police Department got a call about a puppy in distress.
Annabelle, an eight-week-old Mexican wolf and German Shepherd mix, was inside a locked Ford Focus in a Texas Walmart parking lot Saturday afternoon. The temperate had surpassed 100 degrees for the first this summer, and the puppy was in obvious need of help.
A concerned passerby phoned the police after noticing the "blonde-colored puppy" inside the vehicle. When police arrived, they could hear the dog crying and watched her pant as she desperately tried to find shade under the rear passenger seats. With no owner in sight, police officials made the decision to break into the car.
The sunroof was partially open, and rescuers were able to insert a tire iron through the gap and hit the unlock button on the door. Once the door was open, the puppy was carried away to safety and immediately given water.
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About 10 minutes after the puppy's rescue, the owner of the vehicle walked out of the store. Twenty-year-old Chandler Bullen said he had been shopping for at least the last 30 minutes while he left the dog in the sweltering heat of the locked vehicle.
When asked by police why he left Annabelle in the hot car, Manor Police Sgt. Randall Anderson explained Bullen's response:
"His reaction was, basically, he didn't want to waste gas."
After 30 minutes in near 100 degree heat, the interior temperature of a locked vehicle can easily reach 130 degrees Fahrenheit. At 60 minutes, the temperature soars to around 140 degrees. For poor Annabelle, the extreme heat was nearly enough to kill her.
Bullen's decision to save gas while putting the puppy's life in danger resulted in his arrest. Police said he "knowingly and intentionally failed unreasonably to provide necessary shelter and water for an animal in his custody."
Bullen is being charged with "cruelty to a non livestock animal," which is a Class A misdemeanor. He faces up to a year in prison and a $4,000 fine for his actions.
What do you think of Annabelle's rescue? Let us know in the comments.
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