Albany County Sheriff's Office K-9 Unit informs public about heat alarm in vehicles

Emily De Vito
Updated: January 28, 2020 11:14 PM
Created: January 28, 2020 10:42 PM

A post from the Albany County Sheriff’s K9 Unit has been gaining a lot of attention on Facebook. It says if you hear the horn beeping in one of their vehicles, call 911.

When a K9 Officer responds to a call, it’s not always appropriate for their partner to tag along. Whether it’s giving someone CPR or handling a domestic incident, in those situations they temporarily leave the dog in their vehicle.

"Our K9 partners are with us more than our family, they mean the world to us, they're our back up we're with them 24/7,” said Senior Investigator Kayla Apple with the Albany County Sheriff’s Office.

Apple said recently she has been getting a lot of question about a decal on the K9 vehicle. It says “Attention! Horn beeping Dial 911.” If people hear the horn that’s when they’re asked to call. It part of the cars hot and pop system explained Apple. She said they’re able to set the temperature in the car, but if the horn goes off it means it’s getting too hot in there for K9s like hers named Jack.

"You can go anywhere from 70 degrees up to 90 so we keep it relatively low so if the vehicle would have any type of mechanical issues and let's say for instance in the summer the air conditioning turns off or the car fails and we're away from the car for a short period of time answering a call the windows would go down, a fan goes on in the back with the dog and the horn beeps,” explained Apple.

The post informing the public about what the decal means has more than 8,000 shares on Facebook.

"I don't think a lot of people have any idea about what heat systems go into these police cars,” said Apple. "Definitely informational. We want to make sure everyone gets the word out that we are taking the best care of our dogs.”

The post also has a lot of comments. Many of them are thanking the K9 Unit for posting about this and informing the public. There was also many questions on the post. Some pointing out why doesn’t the horn automatically notify dispatchers instead of having someone call 911. Apple said there are some good ideas on the post, but the technology just isn’t there yet.

“There are some systems where you can get mobile notifications on the temperature settings but they’re extremely expensive so in order to be cost effective and get the best quality and safety for our dogs this is the system we go with,” explained Apple. “Lots of other agencies are following suit.”

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