Personally, I think if you have to tell a person not to leave their dog in the hot car, they should not be allowed to have a dog. But, maybe there is someone out there that still doesn’t get it so as the weather warms up here it is again …
Every year, dogs suffer and die when their humans make the mistake of leaving them in a parked car — even for “just a minute” — while they run an errand. Parked cars are deathtraps for dogs: On a 78-degree day, the temperature inside a parked car can soar to between 100 and 120 degrees in just minutes and on a 90-degree day, the interior temperature can reach as high as 160 degrees in less than 10 minutes.
Animals can sustain brain damage or even die from heatstroke in just 15 minutes. Beating the heat is extra tough for dogs because they can only cool themselves by panting and by sweating through their paw pads.
The summer months also are a good time to watch for heatstroke symptoms such as restlessness, excessive thirst, thick saliva, heavy panting, lethargy, lack of appetite, dark tongue, rapid heartbeat, fever, vomiting, bloody diarrhea and lack of coordination. If a dog shows any of these symptoms, get him or her out of the heat, preferably into an air-conditioned vehicle, and then to a veterinarian immediately. If you are unable to transport the dog yourself, take him or her into an air-conditioned building if possible and call animal control: Tell them it is an emergency.
Provide water to drink, and if possible spray the dog with a garden hose or immerse him or her in a tub of cool (but not iced) water for up to two minutes in order to lower the body temperature gradually. You also can place the dog in front of an electric fan. Applying cool, wet towels to the groin area, stomach, chest and paws also can help. Be careful not to use ice or cold water and don’t overcool the animal.
Keep your dog safe this summer!