For the past few days four-legged residents of Dover, New Hampshire, have been enjoying the 80-90 weather by taking joy rides which is fun to watch because nothing is cuter than seeing a dogs' ears flapping in the wind but what worries me is when dogs are left alone in a heated car while owners run into a store to get a few errands done. As noted in the above picture, there is a huge difference between outdoor and indoor temperatures!
Last year the above picture circulated around the internet praising the owner as the "most responsible pet owner ever" but when I read it I shuddered because the owner was obviously misinformed about the dangers of overheated cars! As noted in the diagram above, temperatures rise significantly even if the air conditioner is running or the windows are slightly open!
I agree that it is tempting to get those errands done while your dog waits for you in the car because we really do intend to be in the store for a few minutes but those minutes could easily turn into an hour or even longer if the line at the cash register is too long or if you get distracted by a chance encounter with an old friend so the best advice I can give you is if it's too hot for a human being to be in the car then it is too hot for a dog.
But what if you happen to see a dog who is suffering in a heated car? My advice is to immediately alert the store's customer service so they can alert the owner to go to their car immediately.
After you've gone into the store to help locate the owner the next step is to call 9-11 but if you sense the dog is in immediate danger breaking the car window is recommended but be sure check if it is legal to do so. If you think you are being too nosy or too much of an alarmist, think again! New Hampshire is one of 19 states that prohibits leaving animals in a confined vehicle so don't feel guilty about taking quick action!
Please pass this post along so that these unprotected dogs can remain safe during hot weather! Thank you!