Your car is not a kennel

As the mercury starts to rise, pet owners are being reminded not to leave their dogs in vehicles.

The temperature inside a stationary vehicle can quickly exceed outside temperatures – even with the windows down a little – with devastating results.

Hyperthermia, which is the elevation of a dog’s core body temperature, is a serious welfare issue. Furthermore, causing pets to suffer is a crime that comes with severe penalties including jail.

While your four-legged friend might be giving you those puppy eyes for a ride to the mall or down to the shops, putting their health first is paramount.

If you are going to leave your dog in the car unattended for any length of time, then you should just leave them at home.

What does hyperthermia do?

Signs of hyperthermia and other heat related illnesses include excessive panting, breathing problems, lethargy, collapse, and even unconsciousness. It can also result in brain damage and death.

Unlike humans, dogs cannot sweat to cool off – as the heat increases, bodily functions start to break down. The dog’s heart starts to fail – causing its blood pressure to drop, kidney failure, lack of oxygen to the brain, and internal bleeding. Its body goes into shock.

At this point, even if you can save the dog’s life, it’s likely to have suffered brain damage.

If you see a dog in distress in a locked car on a hot day, phone the police. They will advise on what you should do. Early intervention is crucial.