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Police issue warning, leave an animal in your vehicle and face prison

LAST WEEK ALICANTE POLICE instigated legal proceedings against a person for leaving a dog locked in a vehicle when daytime temperatures exceeded 36°c. The Canine Unit denounced the unnamed individual for allegedly committing the crime of animal abuse.

The incident occurred when concerned local residents spotted the animal locked inside a parked car, showing signs of severe distress and discomfort. They immediately alerted the local police.

Officers attended the scene and, concerned that the dog was in immediate danger of suffocation, broke the rear window of the vehicle and successfully rescued the animal.

The owner is facing a formal complaint, with police charging the individual alleging commission of the crime of animal abuse.

Additionally, police checks on the owner's vehicle revealed that the car did not carry a valid ITV. The vehicle was seized and removed, with the owner facing separate charges for vehicle offences.

Spanish law enforcement last week issued a stark reminder: endangering the life of an animal is a criminal offence in Spain, and offenders risk a prison sentence in addition to hefty fines.

Alicante Police, leave an animal in your vehicle and face prison

Spanish police warning, leaving dogs in cars

Mark Lewis, founder of the Pets in Spain animal charity in La Marina, said “Leaving any animal locked in a car in Spain in the height of summer puts the animal's life at severe risk”.

“Pet owners face additional responsibilities during the summer months”, he added. “It is vital that people understand that negligence of those responsibilities is abuse, and animal abuse of any kind cannot and will not be tolerated by Spanish law enforcement authorities”.

Residents and holidaymakers are advised to remain vigilant and to summon the nearest or fastest possible assistance from the emergency services, in the event that any animal is observed left unattended inside a stationary vehicle.

Spanish police forces are patrolling in greater numbers than ever this year to maintain the safety and security of the public at large, and their pets.

However, if assistance cannot be located at the scene, official advice is to call the local police on 092, Torrevieja police station on (+34) 965 705 326, or the emergency coordination centre on 112 which offers assistance in multiple languages.

Looking for holiday ideas and travel inspiration? Find out more about our favourite recommended things to do on the Orihuela Costa or join the La Zenia community Facebook group and find out what's going on in the local area.

Photo credits: Pets in Spain and Wikimedia Commons.

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Alexander Pichlmayr
Alexander Pichlmayrhttp://www.lazenia.com
Originally from Germany, Alexander has lived in Spain over 28 years. Graduated as MBA, he combines his enthusiasm for marketing with a deep expertise in the Spanish Real Estate and Tourism Industry.


  1. I am so pleased to leave an animal in a car in this heat is a criminal act and should recieve a harsh sentence,if it was a child left in the car they would be prosecuted so it should be the same for an animal.

  2. I agree with all of the above but why. Don’t the police do something about dogs on short chains and no shade and some. No food and water . It so sad I feed two such dogs daily who’s chains are to short there fed on dry bread and. The. Owner drives a Bmw. Why can’t the police stop this

    • Tina, have you informed the police of your dilemma? surely they would do something about it as it’s animal neglect/cruelty. especially if the dogs are exposed to this extreme heat, & on short chains too.. The owners should be banned from keeping pets under such circumstances. It beggars belief how heartless & callous some humans are towards animals.
      I think dogs/pets should be banned from travelling in vehicles, period – unless need to be rushed to a vet in an emergency.
      I hope the problem is sorted 🙂


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