Michigan Humane Society: With
Extreme Temps Coming, Keep Your Pets Protected From The Hot Weather
MHS offers hot weather tips to help keep pets safe;
recommends pets stay indoors
(Detroit, MI) – June 21, 2013 - With temperatures expected to hit over 85
degrees this week, the Michigan Humane Society (MHS) is urging pet owners to
take the necessary precautions to protect their pets from serious heat-related
dangers that can result in heatstroke, or worse.
Dogs are great companions and, as we all know, love riding in the car. But in
warm weather, it’s most often safer to leave them at home. Even on a relatively
mild 85-degree day, parked in the shade with the windows cracked, the
temperature inside a car could reach 102 degrees Fahrenheit in just 10 minutes.
When the outside air is over 100, the inside of a car can reach 120 or more.
In warm weather, the overheated air in a parked car interferes with a pet’s
normal cooling process because, unlike humans, dogs and cats do not perspire to
cool their bodies down – they pant. When the air they breathe is overheated, the
evaporation that usually occurs during panting is insufficient to allow proper
cooling. A pet, like a child, can only withstand a higher body temperature for a
very short time before suffering irreparable brain damage – or even death.
If you see an animal in immediate distress in a parked car, ask the store to
make an announcement or, if necessary, contact local animal control or police.
In Detroit, Hamtramck or Highland Park, call the Michigan Humane Society’s
Cruelty Hotline at (313) 872-3401. Also contact these agencies if you notice a
dog kept outside without adequate food, water or shelter.
Here are some additional warm weather pet safety tips
from the Michigan Humane Society:
-- MHS strongly recommends that pets live indoors with the rest of the family,
year-round. In the summer, this will also help prevent heat-related illness and
reduce exposure to mosquitoes, fleas, ticks and internal parasites.
-- Bring animals inside during hot or humid weather. Pets should not be left
outside in very warm, humid conditions for extended periods, even in the shade.
-- Ensure that pets have access to plenty of fresh, cool water at all times –
indoors and out. Hydration is critical to help your pet regulate his body
-- Avoid chaining or tethering a dog outside. He may get twisted and become
unable to reach shade or water, or his water dish may get knocked over.
-- In homes without air conditioning, use fans to keep air circulating or keep
your pet in a cooler area of the house, such as the basement, during the hottest
part of the day.
-- Avoid vigorously exercising pets during the heat of the day. Instead, take
walks in the early morning or evening hours. Avoid hot concrete or asphalt
surfaces as they may cause damage or discomfort to the animal’s paw pads.
-- Keep in mind that old, young and short-nosed animals such as bulldogs, pugs
and Himalayan or Persian cats are especially susceptible to heatstroke. However,
it is a concern for all pets during hot weather.
-- If you open windows in your home, be sure the screens are secure to prevent
cats or other pets from falling out.
-- Never leave pets unattended around swimming pools, to help prevent accidents.
If your pet is overcome by heat, you can give immediate first aid by immersing
him in cool water. If you are unable to immerse him, lay him on cool, shaded
grass, pour cold water over him and call your pet’s veterinarian immediately.
For more information about pet health and safety,