TAMPA, Fla. -- PETA is calling for all Busch Gardens parks to post signs in parking lots warning visitors of the dangers of leaving children and animals inside hot vehicles after an incident at the Williamsburg location.

  • Incident at Busch Gardens Williamsburg prompts PETA response
  • Dog left in hot car at park rescued this week
  • PETA calling for hot car warning signs in parking lots

A dog was reportedly rescued from a locked car in a Busch Gardens Williamsburg parking lot this week, prompting PETA's response. 

PETA sent a letter to Park President Kevin Lembke, stating that 33 children, 41 dogs, and one kitten have died because of hot weather this year, many of them left in vehicles that became so hot that their bodies shut down. 

The temperature inside a vehicle can easily surpass the outside by 20 to 30 degrees in just a matter of minutes and dogs trapped in hot cars suffer horribly. According to PETA, as their internal temperatures rise, they often salivate heavily, lose control of their bladder and bowels, panic, and struggle to escape by clawing the windows and seats so violently that their paws become bloodied, before they go into shock. 

"A parked car can be a death trap for children and dogs who can't escape as temperatures soar and their bodies shut down," says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. "PETA is calling on Busch Gardens to do its part to help prevent anyone from enduring a horrific heatstroke death on its premises."

Whole Foods and Loblaw Company stores have posted signs warning shoppers about the dangers of hot cars, as have some of the largest mall-ownership groups in the nation, including Simon Property Group, GGP, and Macerich, the report stated. Car companies are joining the effort, too: Tesla introduced a "Cabin Overheat Protection" feature, and General Motors has developed a "Rear Seat Reminder."

PETA is urging people who see a child or animal in a parked vehicle to take down its color, make, model, and license plate number, call your local law enforcement, and wait until the individual is safe -- as well as doing whatever it takes to get the child or animal to safety.