Cool dogs not hot dogs

There has been lots written recently about dogs driving cars but at this time of the year, with temperatures getting up beyond 30 degrees, the biggest issue for dogs in cars is heatstroke.

We like to take dogs with us when we go out shopping or running errands but most shops, cafes etc. don’t allow animals on the premises.  The temptation is to leave the dog in the car, even if just for a few minutes. But a few minutes could be deadly for a dog stuck in a car on a warm summer’s day. On a 30degC day, even in the shade with the windows open a bit, the cabin temperature will reach 39degC in just 10 minutes. In half an hour it’ll hit 49.

A dog can stand only a very short time in a car at 40+ degC before suffering from heatstroke and irrepairable brain damage or even death. According to the SPCA it can take less than 20 minutes for a dog to overheat and slip into a coma. Frantic panting is the most common symptom, along with wide-open eyes and a red tongue. Even if the dog recovers there can still be permanent internal damage.

Unless your dog is going to be able to get out of the car with you wherever you’re going, leave them at home. And make sure if you leave them at home that they have decent shade, ventilation and water. And when you get home, make sure you tell them that they missed nothing and that you had an awful time, just to make them feel better.

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