Dog trapped in car

A Metropolitan Police officer has tweeted the moment he rescued a dog that was locked in a car on the hottest day of the year.

Officers were called to the Finsbury Park area of north London on Friday after passers-by noticed the dog trapped in the car, which had its windows closed.

The animal was found cowering in the driver's-side foot well in a desperate attempt to escape the heat. With the car's owner nowhere to be found, officers had little choice but to smash the windows and rescue the dog.

After the incident, Sgt Richard Berns, who was amongst the first on the scene, tweeted:

The Daily Mail reports that the car's owner did eventually return and questioned why his windows had been broken. He was later spoken to by officers and will be visited at home by the RSPCA.

Friday was the hottest day of the year so far, with temperatures in some areas reaching 32C, prompting the issue of public health warnings.

The heat can prove particularly difficult for animals, many of which can only regulate body temperature by panting and sweating through their paws. Brain damage and death from heatstroke can occur in a dog in as little as 15 minutes if they're locked inside a hot car.

However, even lower temperatures can prove fatal to both animals and vulnerable humans – a 22C ambient temperature can result in highs of over 47C inside a car.