Las Vegas woman accused of leaving dogs in hot SUV while she shopped

LAS VEGAS — A Nevada woman is accused of leaving three dogs -- one of which had to be euthanized -- in a hot SUV while she shopped at Walmart, authorities said.

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Yean Sia, 62, of Las Vegas, was charged with three counts of willful malicious torture of an animal, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.

The dogs were discovered in the SUV by a customer at about 9:30 a.m. PDT on July 22, the newspaper reported. The customer alerted a Walmart security guard, according to KLAS. There were two pugs and one German shepherd in the vehicle, and the windows were rolled halfway down, the television station reported.

The dogs appeared to be “in distress,” according to a police report.

“(The security officer) said when he first approached the vehicle the dogs looked very overheated, panting and their tongues were hanging out,” the Review-Journal reported, citing the police report. “He said they were not in good shape and the heat was getting to them. The owner of the vehicle later came walking up with groceries. (The security officer) believed the dogs would have died within the next 10 minutes if he would not have intervened and called police.”

It was 96 degrees outside when the dogs were found, the newspaper reported.

According to surveillance video, the dogs were left in the SUV for at least 49 minutes, KLAS reported. The dogs were placed in an air-conditioned patrol car, the Review-Journal reported.

The dogs were identified as pugs named Zachary, Howie and a German shepherd dog named Donna, according to the Review-Journal. The pugs were taken to an animal hospital for treatment. Zachary later went into seizures, which veterinarians believed was caused by heatstroke, and was euthanized. Howie showed signs of recovery while Donna did not need medical treatment, police said.

According to police, video surveillance showed Sia entering the Walmart at 9:12 a.m. PDT and returning at 10:03 a.m., the newspaper reported.

Sia was arrested at the scene and was booked at the Clark County Detention Center, the Review-Journal reported.

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