The RSPCA has hit out at owners across our region who left their dogs in hot cars over the weekend.
The animal welfare charity was inundated with hundreds of complaints from people who spotted animals suffering as the temperature rocketed to 90 degrees across the south.
Around 70 calls about animals trapped in hot cars in the South East came into the RSPCA's National Control Centre over the weekend.
More than 280 calls were made across the rest of England and Wales and the heatwave claimed a number of lives throughout the country.
A dog died after being left in a car in Bradford while the owners had Sunday lunch at a pub on July 7 and another dog was pulled dead out of a hot car outside their owner's home in Manchester.
The death of those dogs was an avoidable tragedy. Leaving a dog in a hot car has the same kind of effect as putting it in a microwave. They are literally cooked alive, in what is a horrendous death.
People just aren't listening. Leaving a window open simply isn't enough, and in-car temperatures rise quickly, even if it's cloudy.
What people need to realise is that the next animal to die in a hot car, conservatory of outbuilding could be their pet - that's how serious it is."
More top news
A pair of Endangered rays are settling in to their new home at Portsmouth's Blue Reef Aquarium as part of a captive breeding programme.
Lucy Verasamy has the latest weather forecast for the east of the ITV Meridian region
Lucy Verasamy has the latest weather forecast for the west of the ITV Meridian region