I opened my newsfeed this morning to discover that the Eastern US will be experiencing a heat wave for the next few days. This time of year there are quite a few news articles about the dangers of leaving a dog in a hot car. So I wonder why I continue to see dogs left alone in cars. I think everyone is aware that while there is a heat wave, you should not leave your dog in your car, even for a minute. If you don’t know that, I sincerely hope you don’t own a dog. However, I am not sure that most people realize that in even relatively mild temperatures, say like 82 degrees F, a car can heat up to dangerous levels.
For me, it’s not just that you shouldn’t leave your dog in a dangerous, potentially life threatening situation, hello, DUH! It is also common sense that if it’s 80 degrees out (or even 70 degrees!) you yourself would not sit in a car alone for ten minutes with the window just cracked, why would you leave your dog in there? Would you shove your dog in an oven while it heats up?
I am probably preaching to the choir, as many of my blog readers are dog lovers that will completely agree with my sentiments here. But I want to tell you all my summer plans…
I will be on the look-out for dogs in cars and I will be putting a flyer about the dangers of leaving a dog in a hot car on each and every one I see. I am really tired of walking by and feeling helpless while I see a dog panting in the back seat of a hot car. In fact, if I see any signs of distress, I will be calling the police and animal control. There have been too many times in the past where I worried about the reactions of the dog owner and whether I would be crying wolf. This summer I will be taking action because I firmly believe that a dog’s life is more important than me being a little uncomfortable with calling the authorities.
If you live in Burlington, VT or the surrounding communities, be forewarned, if you leave your dog unattended in a car, you may find a flyer or worse, the police at your car when you return. In Vermont we have a law that protects animals from their owner’s stupidity. If you leave your dog to suffer in a hot car you can be convicted of cruelty, which carries a sentence one year in jail and/or a fine of up to $2,000.
For more information on this issue, please visit MyDogisCool.com, it’s the best on the web for this issue.