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Veterinarian Sits in a Hot Parked Car for 30 Minutes

As nearly half of America continues to melt in the sweltering heat wave plaguing the Southwest, one vet set out to remind pet owners that you should never leave your pet in a parked car — even with the windows cracked open.

Dr. Ernie Ward locked himself in his car armed with a thermometer to see what it feels like for an animal in the same scary situation. With him, he brought a clock and a video camera and narrated his experience as the time ticked and the mercury level rose.

Within minutes, Dr. Ward comments that the air in the car is stifling hot even though there is a breeze outside. He is already drenched in sweat — an effective body function that dogs do not have to cool down.

The ASPCA warns that even on an 85-degree day, the temperature in a parked car can reach 102 degrees in ten minutes — and that is with the windows cracked. They also warn to not be fooled by shade on a hot day. Even a car parked in the shade becomes a furnace due to the outside ambient temperature, plus the sun moves and a car once in the shade may soon be a car parked directly in the hot sun.

By the end of Dr. Ward’s exercise, the car was a deadly 116 degrees! Watch his video below for the full narration and to get a real sense of what it is like for a pup to be stuck in a parked car on a hot day.

Please share this video with other pet owners and if you want to take another proactive step to protect pets from going through this horrible experience consider sharing the poster below and posting them via social media sites.  You can also make print copies that can be left on community boards, on parked cars, or in a stack at a local pet store.

Also, if you see a dog (or any animal, not to mention young children) inside a parked car on a hot day – or even night – you are more than justified to call the police. In many states and countries it is illegal to leave pets and children alone in parked cars during hot weather. So be proactive and maybe you will save a life.

Hot cars kill dogs. Don't leave your dog in a hot car, even for a minute.

Related:
7 Summer Safety Tips for Dogs

Other Resources:
ASPCA Pets in Hot Cars
Red Rover My Dog is Cool
Hot Car, Hot Oven

Read more: Animal Rights, Babies, Behavior & Communication, Caregiving, Cats, Children, Community, Community Service, Do Good, Dogs, Family, Feline Muse, Life, Make a Difference, Nature, Pet Health, Pets, Safety, Transportation, Videos, Videos, Videos, Videos, , , , , , , , , , ,

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Cherise Udell

Cherise Udell is a mom, clean air advocate, anthropologist and feline aficionado with the nomadic habit of taking spontaneous sojourns to unusual destinations. Before her adventures in motherhood, she was an intrepid Amazon jungle guide equipped with a pair of sturdy wellingtons and a 24-inch machete, as well as a volunteer at a rainforest animal rescue center.

221 comments

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4:52AM PDT on Jul 21, 2014

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4:51AM PDT on Jul 21, 2014

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9:26AM PDT on Jul 7, 2014

I think this does "somewhat" of a disservice to the animals. As has been mentioned, the vet is not wearing a fur coat, but aside from that he is not under the same stress, as he knows that he can get out at any time he chooses. Also, the dog would probably be jumping around looking for a way out, causing even more exhaustion. I hate to think that people may think that they are given a pass to leave an animal for 30 minutes, because it is unfair to cause that kind of panic to the animal!

9:10PM PST on Feb 18, 2014

Very true.

3:21AM PST on Dec 19, 2013

Awesome blog! Now In anticipation of a follow-up ….

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8:54AM PDT on Aug 6, 2013

I rember a woman telloing me it was OK because she left her dog in the shade with the windows open, but apparently not so.

Otherwise, I can't understand why peoploe don't know you shouldn't do this.

5:43AM PDT on Jul 30, 2013

thanks for sharing :)

8:12AM PDT on Jul 21, 2013

please take the greatest care of your pets.. they are family, not possessions or conveniences.. please never leave them in cars to die in the heat. thank you for this post, cherise.

3:31PM PDT on Jul 18, 2013

Please take note... motorhomes and large trailers are different from normal-sized vehicles. We live in our motorhome. When we leave our dogs, we can and do leave all of our windows open (living room, kitchen, bedroom, bathroom), close the curtains so that the sun can't beat in, cool the place down with air conditioning beforehand, and leave a big bowl of water out for them (which they have at all times anyway). They can move around, get out of the heat, or sleep on the bed if they want. The motorhome is actually usually cooler inside than outside when the weather gets hot. Our dogs WILL bark at the windows if you approach the vehicle. That's their job.

Please don't report dogs in motorhomes to the police or animal protection services unless you are positive that they are truly in heat distress. Dogs in heat distress don't bark or jump around as a rule. We are responsible pet owners. I am a retired groomer. We love our dogs and would not see them come to any harm. We also don't leave them even in the motorhome for longer than fifteen minutes on hot, still days.

I agree... if you only drive a car or pickup or other "normal sized" vehicle... leave your pets at home on hot days. When we lived in a house, this is what we did. They don't need to be with you and will be better off for your thoughtfulness.

3:46PM PDT on Jul 11, 2013

It's too frequent, so always good to remember!

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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