Children & Pets Locked in Vehicles

Never leave your child or pet alone in a vehicle for any length of time. It only takes a moment to be locked out accidentally or for temperatures to create a dangerous situation.

As temperatures heat up or cool down outside, your car’s internal temperature does the same thing. According to the Winnipeg Humane Society, temperatures can reach 120 degrees inside the car in just minutes in the summer, even if the windows are partially open and the vehicle is parked in the shade.

We take calls about children and pets locked in vehicles very seriously and treat them as an emergency. These calls are free to anyone (member or non-member) in this situation.

What do I do if I’m out and I see a child or pet locked in an unattended vehicle?

If you believe this is an emergency and the well-being of the child or pet is in danger, call 911 immediately.

If the car isn’t yours, try to find the driver straightaway. Go in or call nearby businesses and try to page the owner by the vehicle’s license plate number, make and model.

If you cannot reach the driver, call 911 and ask for police or fire to attend. In these situations, CAA Manitoba is often called in addition to emergency services to help safely unlock a car, rather than smashing a window.

By law, we cannot open a vehicle without the consent of the owner or police.

If the attending emergency responders believe the person or animal in the vehicle is in distress, they may authorize CAA Manitoba to unlock the vehicle.

What should I do if I get locked out and my child or pet is in the car?

If you believe this is an emergency and the well-being of your child or pet is in danger, call 911 immediately.

If your child and pet’s well-being is not in immediate danger, and you are the owner of the vehicle, call CAA Manitoba at 204-262-6000 – one of our drivers will come unlock your vehicle as soon as possible.

Hot Pets in Distress: What to Look For

Excessive panting and signs of discomfort indicate overheating.

If a dog is no longer panting with its tongue out, this could indicate that the dog’s body temperature has risen to levels that need veterinary care immediately.

- Source: Winnipeg Humane Society

For more information on how to prevent and treat overheating and heatstroke in animals, visit the Winnipeg Humane Society.