Last week’s hint of the hot summer ahead left a bad taste in the mouth of police and RSPCA inspectors, who had to rescue two dogs from hot cars in Darlinghurst and a third from a Kings Cross balcony.

Owners who left animals without proper shade or in hot cars were risking the lives of their pets as well as a serious fine, the RSPCA said this week.

The temperature inside one car reached around 80 degrees, RSPCA NSW chief inspector Don Robinson said. People should not leave any living creature inside a parked vehicle at any time of the year, especially in the heat.

The dog on the Kings Cross balcony had been left in the full sun without water.

Robinson said an animal in a parked car could die within six minutes, and urged anyone who saw a distressed animal in a parked car to report it to police or the RSPCA on 9770 7555.

We urge people to make sure their pets and other animals are left with plenty of cool water, adequate shade and shelter from the sun. The best place for your best friend is at home, in the shade with two bowls of cool water, in case they knock one over.

People found guilty of leaving an animal in a hot car face a $22,000 fine or two years in prison.

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