Don't leave your pet in hot vehicle - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Don't leave your pet in hot vehicle

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The heat can also be dangerous to pets. Unfortunately,some people don't provide enough water or shade for their animals or even leave their pets inside sweltering cars.

Phones are ringing off the hook at the Lee county animal shelter with calls from people concerned about animals and heat. "have had about 3 calls about animals being locked in cars," said Jackie Grigg, Animal Control Officer.

Animal Control officer Jackie Grigg says one dog was left inside the owners car for 45 minutes the other dog more than an hour. "I stuck a thermometer in the window and within two minutes it had already reached 120 degrees," she said.

A dogs normal temperature is 101, 102 degrees but once it gets to 104 you must act immediately. If your dog is exposed to high temperatures, heat exhaustion or heat stroke can occur. "The heat stroke will happen so much faster than people will believe," said Andrew Curtis.

Dr. Andrew Curtis says it's a common misconception people have. "They will crack their window and run in somewhere and say it will only be five minutes but in five minutes that car heats up fast," he said.

In those five minutes your pet could die. So what penalties could someone face..if they decide to leave their animal in the car while the run into the store? "Number one you are going to get charged with cruelty or neglect, you'll go to court and you could lose that animal and you could face jail time," she said.

And its not just leaving animals in a car that could harm them, "As hot as it has been there really isn't nothing that can survive that heat and be out in it all day long," she said.

If your pet has long hair, give it a summer hair cut. B aware that certain breeds, and older dogs are also more susceptible to heat. "I see a lot of people getting these animals that don't need to be down south..like huskies," she said.

If you think your pet may be suffering from a heat related injury get them to the veterinarian as soon as possible.

Some symptoms of heat stroke, panting heavily, weakness, vomiting and diarrhea

Animal Control officers say if you must leave your pet in the car... make sure there is someone with you who can sit in the car with your pet with the A-C running.