After a member of the public reported a dog being left locked in a car, two officers confused the King Charles Spaniel toy worth £4.50 ($7.20) for a sleeping dog, according to The Sun.
Out of concern for the safety of the animal in the 18°C temperatures, the policemen smashed the window of the Mercedes after attempting to wake the toy.
Gordon Williams, 80, who owned the car and toy, returned to find his seat covered in smashed glass and an official police note reading: "Smashed your window re concern for animal on rear seat."
Nottinghamshire Police have since agreed to pay £180 ($290) to the retired mining engineer widower so he may replace his window.
"I guess they felt like idiots," said Williams. "He'd been living quite happily on the car's back seat. But I've decided he will be safer sleeping on a chair in my kitchen."
The local police force defended their actions, stating: "The call was made in good faith by a passerby. 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.
"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."
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