Overheated cars create dangerous conditions for family pets

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With the recent heat and humidity we’ve been having, officials are reminding dog owners of the dangers of leaving your dog in the car, even for just a few minutes.

“When a dog is in a car, and your average temperature is 80 degrees, within 10 minutes, that temperature rises to 99 degrees. In 20 minutes, 109 degrees,” Logan Township Police Chief David Reese said.

Reese said they receive dog entrapment calls frequently in the summer. Pennsylvania state law does give them the authority to break into the vehicle to rescue the dog.

“So right away you want to call 9-1-1, get officers to the scene and make such the dogs can be safely removed from the vehicle,” he said.

Dr. Kayla Whitfield from Lakemont Veterinary Clinic said dogs deal with the heat differently than humans, making it more difficult for them to cool down in a vehicle that hot.

“Our dogs they have to pant to be able to expel excess heat, so when they’re trying to pant and excessive temperatures, it’s not as effective as sweating or cooling a human body,” she said.

Owners that put their dogs in dangerous conditions can be fined up to 300 dollars.

“The severity obviously, animal cruelty laws have been increasing, and so, there are fines and things associated but I think that the worst consequence is death, for your pet. They can die,” Whitfield said.

It’s not just cars that can be dangerous for dogs in the summertime. Their owners should use the five second rule to check if the pavement is too hot for them. If you put your hand to the ground and it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for your dog’s paws.

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