Veterinarian Arrested after his Dog Dies from Heat Exhaustion
PALM DESERT-- A german shephard left inside a locked car. It's owner no where in sight. The animal succumbed to the heat.
Witnesses say the dog was in the car for hours. The windows rolled up--no food or water inside.
By the time police broke through the car window to save the dog, it was too late.
"It's too hot to leave my dog in the car," said Palm Desert resident Pat Rickert.
It's common sense to most people, don't leave you animals in an unattended car. But 51-year-old Douglas Huber, a veterinary surgeon, is now facing criminal charges after leaving his german shepherd locked inside his hot car.
"It's barking and we're wondering and all the windows are rolled up," said Maricela Gutierrez, an employee at Valentine Laundry who saw the dog inside the car and called for help.
Witnesses say the dog was inside the scorching car for at least 2 hours. Employees at Valentine Laundry next door noticed the dog in distress and called police for help.
"We love dogs," Gutierrez said. "We were concerned about the heat and we didn't know for how long the car was there because when I got there the car was already there."
Police tried to save the 8-year-old german shepherd. They broke through the window and pulled him out. Unfortunately it was too late. The german shepherd died from apparent heat exaustion.
"Any pet can perish within 10 minutes and it's not a great death for an animal they face brain death and usually very severe pain while they're suffering," said Deputy Director of Riverside County Animal Services, Frank Corvino.
"Inside a locked vehicle the temperature had soared well past 100 degrees to the point where it was able to kill the animal," Riverside County Sheriffs Department Captain Kevin Vest said.
Police say Huber was performing emergency surgery inside the clinic while his own dog became overheated and died.
Despite being arrested over the weekend for alleged animal cruelty Huber was back at work Monday operating on animals
The veterinary clinic where he practices wouldn't comment about the arrest--only saying huber was at work, performing surgery.
"You expect more from a professional that's working with animals every day," Corvino said. "Just like you expect more from a police officer in law or fireman in fire."
It is not only is it inhumane, it's also against the law to leave your pets in an unattended car when conditions may endanger the health or well being of the animal.