By The Time Help Arrived, It Was 160 Degrees In This Car

While her owners basked in the air-conditioned comfort of a shopping mall, this little dog was waiting in a brutally overheated car.

In fact, the temperature in Sacramento, California, was around 91 degrees on Thursday.

When firefighters arrived on the scene, after being called by a concerned passerby, they found the temperature inside the car had surged even more dangerously.

"It was 160 degrees in the car," Chris Harvey of the Sacramento Fire Department tells The Dodo. "We checked it with our thermal imaging camera."

Twitter/SacFire PIO

"Unacceptable," Harvey wrote that day in a tweet. "When warm, never leave pets in cars."

Luckily for this dog, firefighters got her out of there.

When the owners returned to the car, they were given citation by mall security.

It's shaping up to be a sad summer for pets in cars. Already, we've seen case after case of people leaving their dogs to swelter - and we know the results are often fatal.

"We go on these calls all summer long," Harvey says. "Unfortunately people are not thinking -- or thinking they're hoping to be in and out in five minutes."

Temperatures surge inside cars - 80 degrees outside, for example, can spell 99 degrees inside in just minutes.

And even if it's only in the low 70s, the temperature can skyrocket to 116 degrees within an hour, according to the Humane Society of the United States.

For information on what you should do if you see a pet trapped in a hot car, click here.