School is almost in session, but we are still experiencing the heat of the summer. For East Tennessee residents, we know all too well that these soaring temperatures will linger for another month or two. Your canine care center of Morristown wants you to know what you should do if you see a dog left in a hot car.
The Humane Society of the United States advises not to leave a dog in a car if the temperatures outside are 60 degrees or hotter (although we think dogs should never be left in a car!), as the temperatures inside the vehicle can quickly soar to over 100 degrees within minutes. That means a quick trip inside the store could prove deadly for your dog!
The first step in protecting a dog that you see left in a hot car is to get informed. Find out about local or city laws where you live. Find out who to call to report such an incident, and keep that number saved in your phone’s contact list. Being prepared ahead of time could prevent you from wasting time if you do find a dog left in a hot car. Every single minute is valuable!
Get the car’s information
Take down the make, model, color, and most importantly the tag number of the car. Should you have to file a report, you will need this information to help identify the owner.
Page the Owner
If the car is parked at a place of business, call the store near you and have the owner paged. While you may not know the owner’s name, provide a description of the car to the customer service representative so that they can use that as an identifying factor when paging the owner.
Call the authorities if the owner cannot be found
If you have no luck paging the owners, contact the authorities. You can call the authorities or your local humane society to come and assess the situation.
Never leave the scene
Even when having the owner paged, do not leave the scene. If you have a phone with you, which most people do, call the store to have the owner paged, but do not leave the scene to go inside if at all possible. If someone else is with you or you are able to flag down another passerby, have them standby while you go inside for help. Keep an eye on the dog for signs of heat stroke, which may include panting, lack of coordination, dark tongue, or disorientation. If you notice these symptoms, the situation needs attention immediately.
Take action if necessary
If you notice signs of heat exhaustion, the owner cannot be reached, and the authorities seem to be taking too long, take action. Try to remove the dog from the vehicle if possible, and take steps to care for the animal such as provide water and shade. This can be a touchy situation, so be sure to use your best judgment.
While we hope you never come across an unfortunate circumstance such as this, it could happen anywhere. Help by raising awareness and spreading the word that dogs should not be left in the car, even if it seems to be a cool 60 degrees outside. The sunshine can quickly heat up the inside of a car within 10 minutes or less.
AllDogs Canine Care Center offers services to meet your needs for dog training, grooming, and boarding. Please contact us today at (865) 475-2225 for more information regarding our services. We welcome pooches from Dandridge and Morristown, Tennessee.