Queenslanders Will Be Fined And Jailed If They Leave An Animal In A Hot Car
Australia can certainly be a hot place at time, which certainly doesn't bode well when you're inside and haven't got the air-conditioning on full.
But imagine you're an animal that has no idea why it's suddenly baking in an extremely hot car.
Even though you're 'only stepping out for a second' it can be extremely distressing for a dog or cat or whatever as it sits in a car, which can get up to 50C degrees in some cases.
That's why Queensland is moving to fine and jail animal owners if they leave their beloved pets inside a hot car.
The Labor government is seeking to amend existing laws that will specifically mention leaving animals in hot cars in their duty of care legislation.
Agricultural Industry Development Minister Mark Furner said: "Everyone should be at their best in recognising what the welfare of an animal is, particularly in a car that's locked up, or with the window partially down.
"[It] can result in extreme conditions for that animal in a short period of time."
According to Channel 7, an animal owner could be fined as much as $40,035 and spend a year behind bars if they're caught keeping an animal in a car on a hot day - even if the pet doesn't suffer any issues while inside.
But if the animal does suffer heat stress or pain, you could be fined up to $266,900 or spend up to three years in jail. That'll obviously depend on the severity of each case, but it's certainly hoping to be used as a deterrent against bad behaviour.
A study by confused.com found a scary 44 percent of dog-owning motorists said they had left their dog unattended in a car on a hot day.
Researchers also discovered that 70% of those admitted they had left their dog for an average of eight minutes, which is plenty of time for a car's temperature to rise to unbearable levels.
According to the RSPCA, a car sat in 24C heat can reach a sweltering 34C in just 10 minutes, and a dangerous 43C after just half-an-hour.
When members of the public spot a dog alone in a hot car, it can be a very tough situation, with many not knowing what to do - call the police, smash the window, attempt to find the owner or a combination of all of the above.
However, Confused.com's study found that three million drivers (8% ) did not step in when they spotted a dog left in a hot car.
Featured Image Credit: PA