MELBOURNE, Fla. - A 10-week-old puppy that was rescued from a hot car outside the Melbourne Square Mall is now recovering.
Animal Control Officer Steve Anderson had received an anonymous call this week from someone who noticed a puppy inside of a parked car outside the mall. The windows were rolled up and the temperature inside had reached 100-degrees.
Anderson had to break in to get to the pup.
"The puppy was laying on the floor behind the passenger seat, screaming in pain and barely moving. I removed the animal from that situation and placed it inside my vehicle in the air-conditioned truck."
According to Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey, the original owners of the puppy, Brandon Mclaren and Mecaila Johnson, arrived back at the car 30 minutes after the puppy had been rescued. Ivey says they admitted to leaving the puppy inside the car "while they were walking around inside the mall in the comfort of the air conditioning."
They were arrested, charged with animal cruelty and taken to the Brevard County Jail.
Anderson hopes this story will serve as a reminder to pet owners, especially during hot Florida summers where they have been seeing more of these cases.
"Lately we have been dealing with it on a regular basis. People don’t understand that it doesn’t take long for an animal to overheat inside a car without proper ventilation even when you turn your a/c on and the car shuts off. It does not take long for that to take its toll on the animal."
The puppy has been named Dillard, after the store where he was found, and he is ready for adoption.
Watch FOX 35 News for the latest Central Florida stories.