Nowadays pet owners take their pets on car rides to many places. Whether on vacation or to the local store. Not all places are pet friendly and that is where it can become a problem for the pet. If the pet owner decides to run in to the store “really quick”, and leave the pet in the car, hot or cold temperatures can put the life of that pet in danger. It is never okay to leave a pet in an unattended car.
California Governor Brown recently passed a bill AB 797 in to law that would allow a concerned citizen to break in to a car to help a pet that is in danger due to the temperature in the car. They would then not be held liable for any damages done to the car in order to safely take pet out of the car. There are certain rules to be followed and breaking in to the car is only the last resort. You would have to alert the near by business in case that is where the pet owner is located. Authorities would also have to be called (Animal Control or 911). The car doors should be checked to see if they are unlocked. If waiting for authorities etc., is going to endanger the life of the pet, then breaking a window to get the pet out may be the next action that would need to be taken. Once the pet is out of that car, you would be required to wait with the pet for authorities. Please review the new law for further information.
We hope that with pet owner education, pets are not placed in to this position. We recommend for anyone that travels with their pet, to plan accordingly and avoid any situations that may cause a pet to be left unattended in a car.
* Leave your dog at home on warm days.
* On trips with your pet, bring plenty of fresh drinking water and bowl.
* Don’t let dogs ride loose in pick-up truck beds. The hot metal can burn a dog’s paws, the sun and flying debris can hurt the dog, the dog can accidentally be thrown out of the truck if the brakes are suddenly applied, and the dog can jump out if scared or upon seeing something interesting to chase. Instead, use a crate to create a safer space for the dog if you can’t fit the dog inside the truck cab.Ensure that the crate is hooked securely to the bed of truck so that it is unable to move around.
* Take the dog into the shade, an air conditioned area, or to the vet if you see signs of heat exhaustion, which include restlessness, excessive thirst, heavy panting, lethargy, dark tongue, rapid pulse, fever, vomiting, glazed eyes, dizziness, or lack of coordination. To lower body temperature gradually, give the animal water to drink, place a cold towel or ice pack on the head, neck and chest, and/or immerse the dog in cool (not cold) water. Call your veterinarian right away.