Unlike with people, dogs have no say when it comes to their career decisions. If someone decides a dog is going to become a cop, that’s just what happens to them. All they know is that they’re doing what they’re trained to do. Unfortunately for the dogs involved, far too often, that leads to their untimely deaths. This time around, though, the police dog wasn’t shot by an officer. It died in a hot car.
Georgia’s 11Alive reports that on Monday, a Cobb County Police Department dog died in a hot patrol car, and the department blames faulty air conditioning. Because we don’t live in a real country that’s willing to do anything that might actually reduce the number of school shootings, the officer in charge of keeping the dog alive was reportedly participating in active shooter training at Allatoona High School about an hour north of downtown Atlanta.
“The officers have a 45-minute course [with] a 15-minute break. So this actually [is] Officer Neill, who is the K-9 handler for K-9 Chase, had actually just checked on Chase during the previous break. The AC was running just fine, cars working properly. And he went back in for the next session,” Cobb County Police Department Sergeant Wayne Delk told 11Alive.
According to Delk, when Officer Neill returned to check on Chase on his next break, he found him in dire condition. In a statement, the department said, “the air conditioning system malfunctioned” and that “other safety systems did not properly activate and the temperature quickly rose in the vehicle.” Later, the statement said, “K-9 Chase was then transported to a nearby emergency veterinarian clinic,” the post said. “But the efforts were not enough to save him, and he succumbed to his heat-related injuries.”
“This is a horrible incident and our investigators are continuing to gather information regarding the vehicle system failures that led to this tragedy. K-9 Chase is currently at Cobb County Animal Shelter and will be transported to the University of Georgia for a necropsy later today,” Cobb County police said.
Did the air conditioning just malfunction? Did the officer in charge of the dog make a mistake that led to Chase’s death? We can’t say, but hopefully, an investigation gets to the bottom of what actually happened.