July 18, 2014, Victoria, BC (ISN) – Tonight is Harvey the HarbourCat bobble-head night at the Victoria HarbourCats game against Klamath Falls, but the seven-foot tall mascot of the team was nearly unable to attend, as he had to be rescued Thursday night from the back seat of a car that had been sitting in the hot sun in the HarbourCats office parking lot (Well not really, but consider this a Public Service Announcement from Independent Sports News and the HarbourCats about the hazards of leaving pets in hot cars on sunny days).
Harvey the HarbourCat tries his best to get out of the back seat of a hot car that he was briefly trapped in on Thursday (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)
Harvey’s handler, “Jay Zee”, feels terrible about the incident, noting that, “I was only stopping into the HarbourCats office for just a few minutes to get some things needed for Thursday night’s game. I left the windows open a bit, but I had no idea temperatures in the car could rise so quickly when parked in the sun. I am so glad he was OK.”
Estimates are that in the five minutes that Harvey was left in the backseat, the temperature rose from about 25 degrees Celsius (~75 degrees Fahrenheit) to well over 40 degrees C (~+100 degrees Fahrenheit) in that short time.
Harvey’s handler “Jay Zee” walks toward the HarbourCats offices, leaving poor Harvey in the hot back seat of their vehicle (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)
Harvey, although windows were open, was observed in obvious discomfort and was trying, unsuccessfully because of his size, to get out of one of the open windows. He was saved thanks to an observant fan who noticed the big cat in distress and ran into the office to let staff know what was happening.
Harvey, while a cat (felis portus) and a member of the cat family Felidae, used the opportunity to let people know not to let pets of any species sit in the backseats of cars for any length of time on hot, sunny days. “I can’t believe how hot it got so fast,” said the furry mascot. “It made the Cat days of August seem cool by comparison and I think I was coughing up tumbleweeds instead of fur balls. It was really uncomfortable.”
After a few minutes in the heat, Harvey could no longer fight it and just wanted to go to sleep. “It got so hot so quickly,” noted Harvey. “I was coughing up tumbleweeds instead of furballs.” (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)
“It just is not worth the risk to your family pets,” added Harvey. “Just leave them at home in a nice cool place and if needed get a crate for them to stay in, if you feel they might scratch up the couch or something. And while some businesses are pet friendly, many are not (especially when you are my size) and people can’t always take their cat or dog into the place they are visiting. So just leave them at home where they can be safe and comfortable.”
Harvey can now comfortably attend his own bobble-head night on Friday where the first 1,500 fans into Sports Traders Diamond at Royal Athletic Park will receive a miniature likeness of the big guy. The HarbourCats, 7-1 winners Thursday, are taking on the Klamath Falls Gems in Game 2 of their three game series. Gates open at 6:00 pm and first pitch is at 7:11 pm.
Johnny “Zee” didn’t really leave Harvey in the backseat. Harvey, the HarbourCats and ISN simply wanted to let folks know to do your pets a favour and leave them at home. “It’s just not worth the risk,” said Harvey. “I know what it feels like now and I would not wish that on any of my fellow animals.” (Photo: Christian J. Stewart / ISN)
It also means Harvey can continue on in the current 2014 Favourite Mascot of the Year contest being put on by MascotInsider.com. Won in 2013 by Harvey’s crosstown pal Marty the Marmot, Harvey is in tough this year and could use your vote! Head to http://www.mascotinsider.com/2014-favorite-mascot-of-the-year-poll-round-one/ and vote for Harvey today!