A California man faces an animal abuse charge after security officers at the Bellagio rescued a confined three-month-old puppy, news reports revealed. The 50-year-old man allegedly left the young dog in a sweltering car at the casino for two hours. Its mouth was taped shut.
The temperature in the vehicle was at 107.8 degrees, KSNV, a local TV station said, based on police reports. The car was parked on the Las Vegas Strip hotel-casino garage’s top floor, KLAS, another TV station, said.
It was in direct sunlight, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department (LVMPD) added.
The puppy had no food or water. The air conditioning was not turned on. The dog’s mouth was taped with black electrical tape, KSNV added.
A casino security guard was alerted to the puppy being in the car at about 3 pm Wednesday. The officer entered the car by climbing in via a sunroof, police said. The guard rescued the dog.
Another guard gave the dog cold water to drink. They soon put it into an air-conditioned vehicle to cool off.
The puppy apparently survived the ordeal, KLAS said. It is not immediately clear if the puppy got ill from the extreme heat. The puppy was breathing heavily when it was in the car, KSNV added.
It is unknown what happened to the puppy following the incident. It is believed to be a Siberian Husky, KSNV reported.
The suspect, Raul Carbajal of Corona Del Mar, Calif., parked the car at about 1:13 pm on Wednesday. He returned to the car at 3:10 pm, KSNV said.
Police found a gaming ticket on Carbajal. He had a cash out of 75 cents, KLAS said. He posted bond. He is scheduled to appear in court on July 26.
The specific charge against him is suspicion of willful or malicious torture of a dog, KSNV said
In an unrelated incident, last Aug. 4, a dog was seen in a parked car on Las Vegas Boulevard, KVVU, a local TV station, reported. It was 108 degrees outside.
That dog was panting and struggling to breathe, according to Metro police.
An LVMPD officer got the dog out of the car. She was placed in an air-conditioned Metro police car. A Clark County Animal Control officer also showed up. The dog’s owner was given a citation, KVVU said.
Also, in July 2021, LVMPD officers removed two pugs from a car parked at a Walmart. One of the pugs needed to be euthanized. It had been injured from the heat.
In addition, in June 2021, a Las Vegas woman allegedly left her dog in a hot SUV parked at the Wild Wild West Casino. Two weeks later, she left the same animal in the same SUV in front of a Goodwill store on another hot day, police said.
When a police officer arrived at the store, the dog was panting heavily, barking, appeared in distress, and had no water, KVVU said. The SUV was turned off. It was locked with the windows rolled up. An officer broke the SUV’s window to rescue the dog.
Reminder to Pet Owners
The summertime incidents provide a reminder to pet owners about the risks to animals from being in a vehicle when temperatures are high.
“On a warm day, temperatures inside a vehicle can rise rapidly to dangerous levels,” Jessica Simpson, public policy specialist at the Humane Society of the United States, told Casino.org last year.
On an 85-degree day, for example, the temperature inside a car with the windows opened slightly can reach 102 degrees within 10 minutes,” Simpson told Casino.org. “After 30 minutes, the temperature will reach 120 degrees and the pet may suffer irreversible organ damage, seizures, or die.”
Also, dogs with short snouts, who have long hair, or who are younger are at even greater risk from being in a hot car, she said.
Metro cops have made numerous statements about the heat risks to animals and potential charges for the owners.
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