Pet Safety During Hot Summer Months

The Animal Welfare Department reminds residents to take extra care with your pets during the hot summer months. With unseasonably high temperatures hitting or topping 100 degrees, the extreme heat can pose a danger to pets. Below are reminders from the Humane Society of the United States on ways to protect your pet:

Never leave your pets in a parked car. On a warm day, temperatures inside a vehicle can rise rapidly to dangerous levels. On an 85-degree day, for example, the temperature inside a car with the windows opened slightly can reach 102 degrees within ten minutes. After 30 minutes, the temperature will reach 120 degrees.

Shade and water are must. Anytime your pet is outside, make sure he or she has protection from heat and sun (a doghouse alone does not provide relief from heat) and plenty of fresh, cool water. Heat stroke can be fatal for pets.

Avoid walking on asphalt. Asphalt gets very hot and can burn your pet’s paws.

Limit exercise on hot days. Take care when exercising your pet. Adjust the intensity and duration of exercise in accordance with the temperature. On very hot days, limit exercise to early morning or evening hours.

Recognize the signs of heatstroke. Some signs of heatstroke are: heavy panting, glazed eyes, a rapid heartbeat, restlessness, excessive thirst, lethargy, fever dizziness, lack of coordination, profuse salivation, vomiting, a deep red or purple tongue, and unconsciousness.

If your pet shows symptoms of heatstroke, take steps immediately to gradually lower his or her body temperature and contact your veterinarian as soon as possible. Move them into shade or an air-conditioned area, and apply ice packs or cold towels to your pet’s head, neck and chest. Let them drink small amounts of cool water or lick ice cubes. For more information about pet safety during the summer, visit: