Saturday afternoon Montgomery County Precinct 2 Constables, who were approved by Montgomery County Commissioners on Thursday for the new Animal Cruelty unit were dispatched to the Big Rivers Waterpark in New Caney. Some patrons in the park alerted off-duty officers from Splendora and Patton Village who were working extra jobs at the park of a dog in a car. The officers went to check and found a Hyndai Elantra with a Pit Bull mix inside the vehicle. The windows were cracked some and the doors unlocked. Officers attempted to remove the dog when it started barking at them. They were finally able to get the dog out which drank almost two containers of water. They alerted Animal Control. Aaron Johnson, the Director of Montgomery County Animal Control was in the office and responded immediately. The temperature inside the vehicle was 120-degrees. The dog’s temperature was 110. Deputies recovered the dog close to 6 pm and waited for the owner to return to the vehicle. They learned the last time it was checked on had been just afternoon. Deputies contacted the Montgomery County District Attorneys Office who accepted charges on the female owner. The female said she was visiting from Tennessee. She was accompanied by her teenage son. CPS was contacted and will place her son until she bonds out of the Montgomery County Jail. Leaving a pet in a hot or cold car for an extended period of time can be considered an act of cruelty, which is punishable by jail time and a fine. The most dangerous aspect of leaving children and pets in vehicles is their inability to escape of their own accord. Within minutes, a child strapped into a car seat or a dog can be subject to the scorching heat of 120 degrees or more. The inside of a car can become significantly hotter than the outside temperature, even if the windows are rolled down. The bottom line is you can never bet on the outside temperature or your attempt at hurrying to save you from being charged with neglect. In 17 years, 650 children have died due to being neglected in a vehicle. Many of those deaths occurred in Texas. A body temperature of 107 degrees Fahrenheit can start damaging internal organs. Death can occur in as little as 20 minutes. Pets are similarly affected. They can’t sweat to regulate their body temperatures the way humans can, and they can suffer from internal organ damage and heatstroke if body temperatures rise above 106. Leave your pet at home if you can’t bring it with you when you get into town. The dog will now face a civil seizure hearing this week which will put the dog in Animal Controls custody.

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