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Man arrested after dog dies in hot truck

An 8-year-old German shepherd died after its owner left it in a truck for at least seven hours in high temperatures in a Belmont motel parking lot Monday, according to police.

Officers responded to a call reporting a dog in distress shut inside a parked truck in the 1100 block of Shoreway Road around 10:30 a.m. Monday, according to Belmont police Capt. Patrick Halleran.

Officers found the dog, named Elisha, unresponsive in the cab of a black 2011 Toyota pickup truck, Halleran said. The windows were rolled up and no water was available, he said.

Police tried to cool the dog down with water and ice from the motel, but were unable to revive it, according to Halleran. Animal control officials arrived on the scene quickly and attempted to take the dog to an emergency veterinary clinic, but the dog died during the trip, Halleran said.

Police arrested the dog’s owner, Joseph Regis Jr., and booked him into San Mateo County Jail on suspicion of felony animal cruelty, Halleran said.

Regis, 50, who police said is a transient, was asleep in a room in the motel when officers arrived, according to Halleran. Regis said he had last checked on the dog around 3 a.m., Halleran said.

On an 80-degree day, the temperature inside a car can heat up to 120 degrees within minutes, Halleran said. Belmont police and the Peninsula Humane Society urge owners to never leave dogs alone in cars in hot weather.

— Drew Himmelstein, Bay City News

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