Mouheb Ashakih told police that she put her pitbull, El Chapo, in the backseat of her car that Saturday evening after it attacked one of her other dogs.
Disclaimer: This story contains details of animal abuse that may be disturbing to some readers.
Police arrested an Ohio woman whose dog died in a hot car incident after she allegedly locked it in as punishment. According to WVLT TV, Sandusky Police dispatched its officers to a home on Saturday at around 7:20 p.m. after a concerned neighbor called them regarding a pit bull. Per the report, the neighbor told cops that he saw the dog tearing up the inside of a vehicle and that it seemed it wanted to get out of the car.
He noted that all the windows were rolled up and this understandably left him "concerned for the canine’s safety." Hoping to rescue the helpless animal, he approached the owner, Mouheb Ashakih, at her home and asked her to let the pooch out. But he was left shocked when she reportedly told him, "I don’t care. I want him to die."
Following the reports, cops arrived at the scene and found that the dog had "either passed out or deceased at the rear passenger side floorboard." It was after this that Ashakih began screaming and begging police officers to break her car's window. She then told police that she put her pitbull, El Chapo, in the backseat of her car that Saturday evening after it attacked one of her other dogs, according to NBC15.
At the time, when the dog was found, the temperature was listed as 81 degrees in the incident reports. The pit bull had been inside the vehicle for at least 20 minutes and during this time the windows in the car were closed and the doors locked. When officers broke the glass, a "very hot burst of air" was released from the vehicle. The inside of the vehicle had been completely destroyed and covered in blood from the pooch attempting to escape the heated car.
Unfortunately, the dog had already died by the time officers were able to gain access to the dog. Police revealed that the animal was "stiff and hot to touch." As a result, Ashakih was arrested and charged with animal cruelty. "If you called him he would run right back to you," said Erie County Dog Warden Barb Knapp, according to Fox8. "He did not deserve this to happen to him." It was reported that the owner repeatedly told the cops that she loved animals but also asked them to take her other dogs. She gave officers her consent to remove four other canines, including a 2-year-old dog and three 6-month-old puppies, from her residence. Ashakih is currently being held without bond.
Pet owners may think that it's okay to leave their four-legged friend in a car on a warm day if the windows are open or if it is parked in the shade. But the truth is far from it as it's still a very dangerous situation for the dog. The indoor environment of cars can become hot really quickly, even when it doesn't feel that warm. When the outdoor temperature is say 22 degrees, the temperature inside a car can reach an unbearable 47 degrees within an hour, according to the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA).
Unlike humans, dogs are unable to sweat. Thus they rely mainly on their respiratory tracts to dissipate the heat. While dogs with more nasal surface area, like German Shepards and Labradors, dispel heat efficiently, dogs like Pugs, Shih Tzus, and Bulldogs are prone to overheat due to their shorter nasal passage. Now they can lose the heat through dilation of blood vessels of the skin and increased cardiac output, however, it is mainly effective in the hairless areas of their body, explains Bark Post. So it becomes very difficult for dogs to regulate their temperature when the ambient temperatures approached their core body temperature.
While the heart rate increases blood flow initially to dissipate the heat on the body surface, the core pressure drops. Now with a decreased circulating of blood volume (due to fluid loss and decreased blood pressure) their heat loss mechanisms fail and in turn elevates body temperature. This thermal injury results in multiorgan failure at temperatures above 109 degrees as the decreased blood reduced oxygen supply to the tissue of their body. When you leave your pet or even a child for that matter inside a locked car, you are essentially placing them in a heated oven.