When the Temperature Goes Up, Leave Your Pet at Home

The weather has been exceptionally hot lately. While it’s uncomfortable for us humans, it can be especially dangerous for our furry friends.

No matter how tempting it may be or how quickly you think you may run into a store, you should never leave your pet in a car, even with the windows cracked. We’ve all been there: you think you’ll only be gone from your car for a short while and 20 minutes later, you’re still standing in line.

It only takes minutes for a vehicle to act as an oven and for temperatures to soar to 120 degrees. Dogs don’t sweat like we do, which means they can’t cool themselves. When overheated, pets can go into shock, leading to irreversible organ failure. Sadly, an animal can die from heat stroke in just 15 minutes when in a hot vehicle.

If you see an animal in a car, write down information about the vehicle: make, model and license plate number. If you can, visit the businesses surrounding where the car is parked and ask them to make an announcement to find the car’s owner. If you still can’t locate the owner, call the local police or animal control agency and wait by the car for them to arrive.

If the animal is in visible distress or animal control can’t come immediately, call 9-1-1 to report the situation. In addition, beginning on August 9, 2017, Colorado law will permit citizens to break a car window to save a dog in a hot car. In order to warrant taking this action and for you to not be considered liable, you must make a reasonable attempt to locate the dog’s owner, call 9-1-1 before breaking into the car and then stick around and wait for officers after the window has been broken.

We all love our pets and would never want to put them in danger. Remember, when the temperature goes up, leave your pet at home. They will be much happier (and cooler) there.


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