The dog had knocked the car's gear shift while the owner was away

By Gabrielle Chung
November 22, 2019 07:22 PM
Credit: WPBF

Florida residents were left pleasantly perplexed on Thursday morning when they spotted a dog sitting behind the wheel of a car in their neighborhood.

A black Labrador Retriever named Max got a taste of the open road when he accidentally knocked his owner’s parked car into reverse, spending the next hour driving the car in circles, according a statement released by the Port St. Lucie Police Department.

Neighbors were alerted of the dog’s joy ride when they spotted a 2003 Mercury Sable spinning around their cul-de-sac.

“First I thought I saw somebody backing up, but then they kept going and I’m like, ‘Okay, what are they doing?'” Anne Sabol, a local resident, told WPBF. “The cops came, and I’m like ‘Okay.'”

The dog’s owner had stopped his car and stepped away for a moment, leaving the dog inside the vehicle, police added in their statement. The owner was reportedly locked out of his car when Max accidentally hit the gear stick.

Though the owner had an extra car fob, he could not unlock the door because it was out of batteries, police said. Authorities intervened when the car slowed down and police were able to unlock the door by entering a code in the key pad of the driver side door.

“I saw this car going around in a circle and it was doing it for about an hour. And when the cops got the door open, a black dog jumped out, I was like, ‘They should give that thing a license,'” Sabol told WPBF.

No major injuries were reported, though the car itself sustained minor damage after hitting a mail box, according to the police statement. Authorities noted that Max was “fine, healthy and happy” when he was retrieved.

A homeowner told WPBF that the human driver will replace the damaged mailbox.