Officers at Nottinghamshire Police received a call from a concerned passer-by, distressed that a dog had been left in the back of a locked car

Once police had broken the window of the car, (a Merc no less!), they discovered it was nothing more than a stuffed toy.

The car’s owner 80-year-old Gordon Williams, who also owns the dog, wasn’t too fussed about the damage.

“I know Little Willy is quite realistic and if they weren’t sure about it, they did a good thing as we don’t want any more dogs dying in the heat of a car,” he told the BBC.

He said Little Willy would stay at home from now on.

A police spokesman said: “The call was made in good faith by a passer-by. In this case officers believed a dog could be suffering due to the heat of the day and its life was potentially at risk, so felt there was no other option but to enter the vehicle. We will be speaking to the owner of the vehicle about paying for the damage.

“This is a perfect example of why drivers need to think about what they leave on view in their car, both in terms of other people’s perception of the objects and in a bid to deter opportunist thieves.”