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Dog dies in car while owner browses inside of a store for 13 hours

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According to Tuesday's publication of the Crestview News Bulletin, a Crestview, Fla., woman is facing a charge of animal cruelty after she allegedly left her dog locked in a parked car while she browsed inside of a Walmart store for 13 hours.

The dog's owner, 49-year-old, Cassaundra C. Rasmussen, is facing a misdemeanor charge for the June 27 incident which left her pit bull mix, "Waldo," dead from heat related issues. According to WKRG News, another customer discovered the dog inside of the vehicle around 11 a.m.

The Northwest Daily News reported that Rasmussen left the air-conditioning on in the car, but it was not working when the authorities arrived - the woman also claimed to have left the dog food and water.

Rasmussen claimed that she forgot the dog in the vehicle and she appeared "confused" when she spoke to the responding police officers. Though one window had been left partially open for Waldo, it was not enough to keep temperature inside of the car from climbing to a deadly level. A necropsy on Waldo's body revealed that he had "cooked" from the inside out.

Rasmussen was arrested on the afternoon of June 30 and transported to the Okaloosa County Jail.

Though summer has just gotten underway, there have already been several incidents of dogs becoming sick, or dying, after being left inside of parked vehicles. A dog left inside of a vehicle in New York died on June 4 - the dog's owner claimed that he had nowhere to keep the dog while he worked. A distressed dog was rescued from a vehicle which was parked outside of a New Jersey waterpark earlier this month, and a good Samaritan in Jackson, Mich., broke out a car window to rescue a distressed puppy who had been left inside on a warm afternoon.

On warm days, dogs should be left at home - cracked windows are not good enough to ensure a dog's safety inside of a parked vehicle.

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