A Portuguese water dog died from heat stroke after it was left in a hot car for several hours in Wolfville on Sunday, say RCMP.

Kings County RCMP received a call about a dog in distress in the Acadia University parking lot at around 3:20 p.m. when it was nearly 30 C outside.

Bystanders smashed in a window to get the dog out and attempted first aid, but it was too late.

Police found the owner, a Lunenburg man, nearby. Police said the 36-year-old man was attending a convention in the area. His name has not been released.

"A vehicle traps air inside like an oven in the summer. An animal can only survive a short time in a hot, confined environment before suffering brain damage and death," said Const. Blair MacMurtery.


Const. Shawn Currie waits with the Chihuahua he helped rescue. (Steve Lawrence/CBC)

The police investigation is ongoing.

Meanwhile, a Chihuahua was able to escape a hot car on Monday with the help from Halifax Regional Police.

Const. Shawn Currie used a pipe to unlock the electric door of a car with New York licence plates parked near the waterfront.

It's estimated the dog was locked in the car for an hour, and was barking and panting by the time it was rescued.

A veterinarian assistant who was passing by treated the small dog. It appeared to be recovering.

Police have called in animal control.

Since July 1, Halifax Regional Police said they'd responded to 139 calls about dogs locked in vehicles.