SAN ANTONIO – Spurs shooting guard Lonnie Walker is raising awareness about the dangers of leaving pets in cars.
Walker, who will begin his sophomore season with the Spurs, partnered with animal rights group People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals for the video.
In the PSA, Walker and his dog Zola are in the backseat of a vehicle when the driver parks, shuts off the engine, grabs Zola and tells Walker they'll "be right back." Walker responds, "Whatever," and Zola and Walker's friend enter the store.
San Antonio @spurs star @lonniewalker_4's dog Zola left him in the car to run into the store just for a few minutes.— PETA (@peta) July 10, 2019
Watching the temperature climb as he sweats and struggles is so hard to see. If an @NBA player can’t take that heat, how can your dog? pic.twitter.com/Tu4BIHcP5R
After five minutes in the vehicle, the car reaches 90 degrees and Walker says, "It is freaking hot." A sweaty Walker is then seen trying to cool himself off by blowing into his shirt before trying the doors to see if they're unlocked.
Walker then resorts to momentarily breathing through a cracked backseat window, later wondering out loud, "Where are you guys, man?"
After 10 minutes in the vehicle, Walker begins calling for someone to open the door for him, but no one comes.
Twenty minutes later, the car reaches over 100 degrees and Walker is drenched in sweat.
Walker's message at the end of the PSA was, “Every year, dogs suffer and die when they’re left in parked cars on warm days. Heatstroke can occur quickly, even with the windows partially rolled down. On a 78-degree day, temperatures in a parked car can rapidly increase to 100 degrees."
Walker recommended writing down the car's information and getting the pet owner's attention or calling authorities whenever you see a pet left alone in a hot vehicle.
PETA recommends not leaving the scene until the pet is rescued. And, if authorities are unresponsive or too slow, finding other witnesses who agree that the pet is in immediate danger and taking other steps to remove the animal from the car.