With the first heatwave of the summer comes the obligatory editorial regarding dogs – specifically what not to do with them.
It seems every year we report at least one tragedy of a dog succumbing to heat after being left in a car during a sunny day.
How is it that people don’t learn?
The BC SPCA receives nearly 1,000 calls to rescue animals from hot cars every year. This year will be no different, and the calls will escalate this week.
It only takes 10 minutes in a hot car for a dog to suffer serious injury.
If you see an animal in a car in hot weather, showing clear signs of heatstroke or distress, the BC SPCA recommends you call your local animal control agency, police, RCMP or the BC SPCA Call Centre at 1-855-622-7722. Do not attempt to break a window to rescue an animal – not only do you risk injuring the animal, but only RCMP, local police and BC SPCA Special Constables have the authority to enter a vehicle lawfully to help an animal.
But it’s not only pets in hot cars that should be a concern during heat spells like the one we are experiencing this week.
Keep in mind your dog’s well-being and comfort level whatever your plans are. Although all responsible dog owners make sure their pets get their regular exercise, discretion is the better part of valour when it comes to walking in such heat – particularly on pavement.
If it’s too hot for you to walk on it barefoot, the same applies to your dog. There will be plenty of TikTok videos posted this week of people frying eggs on their sidewalks. Pay heed.
Also, keep in mind that fur coat of theirs. If walking is a must, find a shady area, like the woods, with plenty of water nearby. A riverside trail would work. That said, in heat like this, the most comfortable place for your dog is at home – inside if possible.
There will be plenty of days this summer to make up for this week’s lack of walks.