RSPCA: This is what you can do if you see a dog in a hot car in a heatwave

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RSPCA: This is what you can do if you see a dog in a hot car in a heatwave

Postby Community Editor » Tue Jul 23, 2019 11:03 am

A dog welfare charity has advised owners to not leave pets alone in a hot car seat even for a few minuets as it can prove fatal.

Temperatures are set to hit at least 37C later this week across London, so a word of warning.It doesn't take a genius to know not to leave a pet in a boiling hot car, but it does take an idiot to think they know better than to listen to this.

Last year RSPCA dog welfare expert Lisa Hens said: “We had hoped that the message was finally getting through but, sadly, it seems that this may not be the case.

"The temperature inside a car can soar to 47C (117F) within minutes, even when the outside temperature is just 22C (72F) and this can be fatal for a dog."

"If you wouldn't leave a baby in 47C of heat then why would you leave your beloved pet?"

Opening a window or leaving you car in the shade does not help the situation and you may come back to a smashed window or a dead pet.

But what can you legally do if you see a dog locked in a boiling hot car?

A dog that is in danger will show signs such as panting heavily, drooling excessively, being lethargic or uncoordinated, or collapsed and vomiting.

The RSPCA advises people to call 999, warning that if you smash the glass of a car to get a hot dog out it could be classed as criminal damage.

But there may be a way around this - make sure you tell the police of your intentions and take photos or footage of the dog as well as names and numbers of witnesses.

The law states you have a lawful excuse to commit damage if you believe that the owner of the property you damage would consent to the damage if they knew the circumstances.
Here is what the RSPCA says for once you have got the dog out of the car:

If the dog isn't displaying symptoms of heatstroke:
Establish how long the dog has been in the car. A ‘pay and display’ ticket could help.

Make a note of the car’s registration. If the owner returns, but you still feel the situation was dangerous for the dog, you may still report the incident to the police.

If you’re at a shop, venue or event ask the staff to make an announcement to alert the owner of the situation.
If possible, get someone to stay with the dog to monitor its condition. If it begins to display signs of distress or heatstroke, be prepared to dial 999.

You can also call the 24-hour cruelty line for advice on 0300 1234 999. However, if the dog's in danger, dialling 999 should always be the first step.

Earlier this week an American Bulldog Finlay was left fighting for his life after his body temperature soared to a life-threatening 42.2C (108F) during recent hot weather.

The one-year-old - who was born with three legs - became overheated when his owner took him to a park in Glasgow.

The charity has advised not walking dogs at the hottest times of the day. But it said early morning or later in the evening walks are best accompanied with water.

It has also said tarmac can get "very hot in the sun" and advises owners "to check it with their hand before letting dogs walk on it so they don't burn their paws". 

Photo credit: RSPCA
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