CASPER, Wyo. — The National Weather Service in Riverton issued a reminder on Friday, July 31 telling people to remember not to leave children or pets unattended in vehicles when temperatures are hot.
In addition to their reminder not to leave pets and children unattended in vehicles, the NWS in Riverton shares other heat safety tips as the summer turns toward the month of August:
The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) says that “hundreds of pets die from heat exhaustion because they are left in parked vehicles” on an annual basis.
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“The temperature inside your vehicle can rise almost 20º F in just 10 minutes,” the AVMA says. “In 20 minutes, it can rise almost 30º F…and the longer you wait, the higher it goes. At 60 minutes, the temperature in your vehicle can be more than 40 degrees higher than the outside temperature. Even on a 70-degree day, that’s 110 degrees inside your vehicle.”
The AMVA says that hot temperatures inside of a vehicle can put pets “at risk of serious illness and even death, even on a day that doesn’t seem hot to you. And cracking the windows makes no difference”
“Want numbers? An independent study showed that the interior temperature of vehicles parked in outside temperatures ranging from 72 to 96º F rose steadily as time increased,” the AMVA says. “Another study, performed by the Louisiana Office of Public Health, found that the temperatures in a dark sedan as well as a light gray minivan parked on a hot, but partly cloudy day, exceeded 125oF within 20 minutes.”
“This study also found that cracking the windows had very little effect on the temperature rise inside the vehicle. This is definitely a situation where ‘love ’em and leave ’em’ is a good thing. Please leave your pets at home when you can…they’ll be safe and happily waiting for you to come home.”
The AVMA also says the people should restrain pets while vehicles are moving using harnesses or carries.
“Most of us smile when we see a dog’s face happily hanging out a window, digging the ride and the smells wafting on the breeze, but this is a very risky venture for the dog for three reasons,” the AVMA says.
The AVMA says restraining pets is important for these reasons:
- unrestrained pets could be injured in the event of collision and could also increase the risk of collisions due by distracting the driver
- dogs are at “high risk” of eye, ear, face and mouth injury from “airborne objects” when their head is out the window
- dogs hanging out the window are at risk of falling or jumping out of open windows
“And let’s not forget the severe dangers of driving with your dog in the bed of a pickup truck,” the AVMA adds. “Dogs can fall or jump from the truck bed and be injured or killed on impact, or be struck by other traffic.”
“And just as letting your dog hang its head out of the window puts it at risk of injury from debris, a dog in a truck bed is even more exposed to airborne hazards. Using a appropriate-length tether may reduce the risk that your dog will exit the truck bed, but the tether could tangle, injure, or even choke your dog. If you must transport your dog in the bed of a pickup truck, use a secured and appropriately sized and ventilated dog kennel. (For more information, read our Dogs Traveling in Truck Beds literature review.)”
“Before you put your pet in the vehicle, ask yourself if you really need to take your pet with you – and if the answer is no, leave your pet safely at home. If you must take your pet with you, make sure (s)he is properly restrained so the trip is as safe as possible for both of you.”
This article originally appeared on Oil City News. Used with permission.