Why you shouldn’t smash a car window to “save” a dog

I wanted to have a quick word with you about online vigilantism. In this particular case I want to talk about leaving dogs in cars and promoting smashing car windows to “rescue” dogs.
I’m all for loving dogs. I’m in this industry because I am passionate about saving dogs, educating owners and giving dogs the best possible life that we can.
I understand that YOU are coming from a good place and you love animals otherwise you wouldn’t be commenting.
Heres the problem I have with this.
You have NO idea how that dog will respond when you shatter glass into the car that they are sitting in. It may react aggressively, it may panic and try to run, it may then run in front of traffic, it may attack you or it may even sit there quietly.
So, lets say you smash a window and the dog responds negatively…
Do you know how to stop a dog attacking you? Are you adequately equipped to restrain the dog? What happens if the dog panics, runs past you and into traffic? Can you then cope with a potential motor vehicle accident? Do you even know the dogs name to call it back (not that it will respond while panicking). Are you qualified in animal first aid to then administer appropriate care?

There are so many possible variables when doing this that you would want to make sure you absolutely know how to manage/prevent any further issues from occurring.

I want you to really think about this, if you were the dog and you were suddenly confronted with a loud bang and shattered glass flying through the vehicle and a stranger climbing in. How do you think you would cope? Would you be calm? Would you allow a perfect stranger to then try and pull you out of the car? Some dogs may be fine with this, I can tell you with 100% certainty, mine are among the MANY that would not. They would not see a kind person trying to “save” them. They would see an intruder who is posing a threat.

These online comments are even happening in the middle of winter when it’s only 12 degrees and people are insistent the dog will die. People are filming dogs in cars that are actually quite comfortable and waiting for their owners to come back. We have people posting details of car registration online and people being verbally and physically attacked. This is NOT OK.

Now don’t get me wrong, if a dog is suffering in a hot car and you can visibly see that it’s distressed/ dying (not just sitting comfortably in a warm car in winter), I’m not saying don’t do anything. By all means, save that dog but do it via the RIGHT channels.

Call the police. Tell them it’s an emergency. If they cannot help, they will get someone who can and they will do it quickly. They will also advise you how to proceed and keep you legally protected and bystanders safe and the dog alive.

Please just have a think about this. I know you love animals and I know that it’s coming from a good place but there are many things to be considered before breaking into a car.