Never leave your dog in a parked car! You’ve probably heard this piece of pet safety advice a hundred times and you’re well aware that a car can heat up to deadly temperatures in a matter of minutes on a sunny day. The problem is, even well informed pet parents can make mistakes. You might think it’s okay to leave your canine companion in the car if the windows are cracked or if you snagged a parking spot in the shade, but it’s still not! Below are a few more reasons to leave FIDO at home when you’re out running errands:
Leaving the windows cracked doesn’t cool down the car enough.
Leaving those windows down just a little isn’t going to cool down the car enough to protect your dog. Dogs feel heat differently than people do and can only cool themselves down through panting and sweating out of the pads of their paws. Not enough cool air can circulate in the car from the leaving the windows cracked, putting your pooch at serious risk for heatstroke.
Shade doesn’t provide adequate protection.
Even if your car is parked in the shade, temperatures inside a vehicle can still rise dangerously quickly. The temperature inside a closed vehicle can soar 19 degrees in just 10 minutes and 29 degrees in just 20 minutes. So, even if the temperature starts out a few degrees cooler in a shady spot, it can still rise to lethal levels.
The AC can be a dangerous option too!
It’s not unheard of for an air conditioner compressor or engine to fail, especially with an older car. It’s also not impossible for a dog to accidentally hit a button or switch that turns the air conditioning off or changes the temperature. Plus, why would you ever leave your keys in the ignition while running an errand?
It’s best to always play it safe and leave pets at home, even on moderately warm days. Practice hot weather safety at home too by always providing plenty of clean water and a cool place to rest.