Each year, thousands of family pets suffer from heatstrokes or suffocation after being left in a parked car. Even if you are going into a store for just a second, the results can be tragic. In fact, many of the sad stories we hear about animals who die in cars are a result of someone who just had to run in very quickly and grab something. What they and many others don’t realize is that in just minutes your car can heat to dangerous levels, which put your pets at risk.
It actually doesn’t even need to be that hot out for tragedy to strike your pet. In fact, on a day that is just 75 degrees outside, a car can heat to 88 degrees in 10 minutes and rise to 122 degrees in less than an hour. Even with windows cracked, temperatures can be too high and dangerous for pets far too quickly.
What You Can Do
If you witness a pet that has been left in a hot car, you must act quickly. Here are a few steps you can take to help save the pet’s life.
- If you see something that looks wrong, don’t be shy, speak up. If there is a pet that is alone in a vehicle call the Humane Society of Greater Dayton immediately at (855) PETS-911. You can also call the Animal Resource Center at (937) 898-4457 or your local police department.
- Try to find the car’s owner. If you are in a parking lot where all the cars are clearly going to one store, go inside and have the manager do an announcement over the intercom. The quicker you react to this, the better chances you are giving to the pet for survival.
- Educate people by hanging signs in local places such as pharmacies, grocery stores and Laundromats that remind pet owners how important it is to not leave pets unattended in a car.
Together, we can keep our pets safe and healthy during the hot weather season. For more information or for signs to hang up in the stores in your community, contact the Humane Society of Greater Dayton’s cruelty and neglect department at (937) 262-8091.
Do you have a question for Brian? E-mail him at AskBrian@hsdayton.org. Brian Weltge is the President and CEO of the Humane Society of Greater Dayton. The Humane Society is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to building loving relationships between people and pets. Founded 115 years ago, it is the largest and most established no-kill animal welfare agency in the area. It focuses on pet adoptions, eliminating pet overpopulation, providing education and ensuring the humane treatment of animals. For more information about the Humane Society of Greater Dayton, call 937- 268-PETS (7387) or visit www.hsdayton.org.