Don't leave pets in parked cars for any period of time. Animals left in parked cars can suffer brain damage and die from heatstroke. If it is 85°F outside, the temperature inside a car can reach 120°F in a matter of minutes, even with the windows down. If you see an animal in a parked car on a warm day, alert the management of the store. If the owner does not return promptly, call local animal control or the police.
Always provide plenty of water and shade for your pets while they are enjoying the great outdoors. A shelter is required by local ordinance.
Pets need exercise even when it is hot, but extra care needs to be taken with older dogs, short-nosed dogs, and those with thick coats. On very hot days, limit exercise to early morning or evening hours. Keep in mind that asphalt gets very hot and can burn your pet's paws.
Signs of heatstroke include panting, dry gums, vomiting, diarrhea, elevated temperature, staggering, sluggishness, seizures or unresponsiveness. If you suspect your pet is suffering from heatstroke, take them to a veterinarian immediately!
There are no set guidelines on when it is, or is not, safe to allow your pets outdoors. The amount of exposure considered safe varies depending upon the pet’s age, body condition, type of exercise, duration and the current weather conditions. If you are unsure, please consult your veterinarian.
For more information about how to protect pets in the heat, contact Abilene Animal Services at 325-698-0085.