Essex Police are warning dog owners not to leave their dogs alone in their car in the heat.

Officers are advising residents how quickly the temperature jumps in cars and the risk this poses to animals.

As temperatures reach over 30C across the county today, the force have reminded pet owners of an experiment they did last year.

A car, with the interior cooled down to 18.5C, was left in the sun. Just more than 30 minutes later the inside temperature had climbed nearly 13 degrees.

Re-posting the previous experiment on Twitter, an Essex Police spokesman said: "Leaving windows down a bit or parking in the shade does not help when air temperature is so warm."

Just hours after posting the reminder, officers spotted a dog left in a car with the windows slightly open and an empty water bowl left for them.

A spokesman for the force added: "We are on way to take a dog into our care after officers spotted it had been left in a car with windows slightly open and an empty water bowl.

"Dog safe and well. However we keep spreading the message."