Police in Long Beach, California, are mourning a K-9 who died apparently of heat-related causes, in a department vehicle.
The dog, Ozzy, was found by its handler when both were off duty at about 3:40 p.m. Aug. 14, the Long Beach Police Department said in a statement.
"This unfortunate incident was not intentional," the statement reads. "Preliminarily, we believe this was an accident and we are taking all the necessary steps to avoid this happening in the future."
The department said its K-9 vehicles have "fail/safe equipment that is meant to generate an alert," but it might not have been working, the statement said. The department statement said K-9 handlers are checking their heat system controllers before every shift.
A veterinarian examined Ozzy. "The preliminary results determined the cause of death to be heat related," the police statement said.
The high temperature that day in Long Beach was 89 degrees, National Weather Service records show.
Police did not identify Ozzy's handler.
"Our department is mourning Ozzy's loss as we would with any of our employees. Our K9's are an indispensable part of our department, and we will continue to view them as our partners."
The dog was found by its handler when both were off duty.
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