To the Journal editor:
When it is 70 degrees outside, the temperature inside your car will spike to 89 degrees in just 10 minutes and 104 degrees in 30 minutes.
Imagine sitting in a car with a fur coat on in these temperatures. Never leave your dog unattended in a parked car during the summer months. Even if you park in the shade with your window's cracked open, the internal temperature of your car can heat up in no time at all putting your dog at serious risk for heat stroke and death.
Cars can rapidly reach life threatening temperatures even on mild days. Never leave your dog in a parked car when it is warm/hot outside, and if you see a dog in a parked car, take swift action and call 911 and then report the license plate and make of car to the store manager immediately, you may save a life!
During the hotter months, restrict outdoor exercise to early morning or late evening when temperatures are cooler. Especially if you jog with your dog. Many dogs will keep running to stay with you but may be over heating in the process. While we can dress appropriately for the weather, dogs cannot, they wear fur 24/7.
Signs of over heating are heavy panting, drooling, loss of energy, weakness, stumbling, vomiting or diarrhea. If such signs are present, rinse or bathe your dog with cool (not cold) water, or, cover them with wet towels and bring the dog into an air conditioned building or use a fan on the dog to bring the body temp down and get your dog to the vet as soon as possible.
Be sure that any dog kept outdoors has plenty of fresh water and shade. If it is too hot outside, keep your pet indoors to avoid heat stroke which can lead to death. Dogs do not tolerate high temperatures as well as humans.
Be cautious when walking your dog on pavement which can become very hot and burn their feet. The same applies to hot sand on the beach. If it is hot on your feet, it is hot on theirs too!
Extra caution must be used with older dogs. Dogs cannot regulate their body temperature as easily as we can. Always offer plenty of fresh water, this cannot be stressed enough.
Summer should be fun for dogs too so take extra precautions and enjoy the sun!