Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Summer Safety

By: Steve Dale

On July 4, Maya Webb, of Bettendorf, IA, went shopping at a Joliet, IL, furniture store. Unfortunately, leaving her two Pit Bulls in the car. It was "only" 81 degrees, and she was barely gone for two hours, but both dogs suffered heat stroke and died. Webb was charged with aggravated cruelty to animals, a Class 4 Felony.

"Dogs are locked inside hot cars all the time," says Dr. Mark Russak, president-elect of the American Animal Hospital Association. "Even opening the windows a bit isn't enough. I've actually smashed windows to let dogs out to breathe. I don't recommend window smashing, but I just did what was necessary."

Dr. Sheldon Rubin, in Chicago, IL adds, "These days, most police departments will respond because there are laws in many places about leaving children or pets in hot cars. Sometimes it's better to run an errand and simply not bring your pet with you."

According to the AAA Chicago Motor Club, when it's 85 degrees outdoors, even when a car's windows are open a crack, on a sunny day the dashboard can heat up to 170 degrees in less than 15 minutes. What's more, dogs don't cool themselves as effectively as people. Panting just isn't as efficient as sweating (though dogs do sweat some from their paw pads).

Read the entire article

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