Every year dogs die completely preventable deaths from being left in hot cars. While these deaths are not intentional, they are avoidable.
In a matter of minutes a car with its windows rolled up can become a death sentence. A car acts like a greenhouse and heats up rapidly. Since dogs pant to cool down, with no air circulation they can quickly overheat causing heat stroke, brain damage, and death.
There are several misconceptions when it comes to leaving pets in the car so we thought we’d share a few, if anything, to help educate and prevent unnecessary death.
Myth #1: It’s only dangerous to leave a pet in the car if it’s hot outside. FALSE. Even when the temperature is 70 degrees out, a parked car can quickly reach unsafe temperatures above 100 within 30 minutes.
Myth #2: Parking in the shade keeps the car cool. FALSE. Because the sun moves continually throughout the day, so does the shade. So parking in the shade can change to parked in the sun within the hour.
Myth #3: Cracking the windows will keep the car cool. FALSE. Multiple studies have proven that cracking a window does not greatly affect the inside temperature, in fact a study by the Louisiana Office of Public Health found that even leaving the windows wide open does very little to affect these temperatures. It does not let in enough air, it does not circulate air, the inside of a car can still reach deadly temperatures even with windows cracked or open..
Myth #4: If I run in real quick he’ll be fine. FALSE. Cars can become fatal within minutes. So even just a minute it too long. When it’s hot out it’s best to leave pups at home if you can’t bring them in with you.
Myth #5: It’s safe if I leave the AC on. FALSE. There are many tragic stories of dogs being left in cars with the AC originally on, and due to the hot temperature or other factors the car shut off and with it the AC leaving the dogs to suffocate to death.
The best rule of thumb is when you’re not in the car, they’re not in the car.
If you see a dog in a car on a hot day, check for immediate signs of distress and call 911.