Summer is here, and for some people in Ontario that means road trips and exploring the outdoors with family and friends – including furry companions. If your pet is travelling with you in your car, keep their needs in mind as you plan your trip. Do not leave pets unattended in your vehicle. The temperature inside your vehicle will quickly become much hotter than the temperature outside, and it can be fatal. If your pet can’t go with you, leave them at home where they will be safe, cool, and comfortable.
Here are some other things to keep in mind as you plan your summer road trips:
Ensure your pet is properly secured in your vehicle at all times
Always have fresh water available in the car for your pet
Take frequent breaks so both you and your pet have an opportunity to stretch your legs.
If you come across an unattended vehicle with an animal inside that appears to be in distress, act quickly and report it to the OSPCA at 310-SPCA (7722). You can also contact your local police service, your local Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, or your local Humane Society.
Every summer, the Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (OSPCA) runs the #NoHotPets campaign to keep pets out of hot cars. Consider signing the pledge and spreading the word to keep pets safe across Ontario.
Dogs in particular have very limited ability to sweat. Even a short period in a hot environment can cause suffering and distress and could result in brain damage or death.
Excessive panting, drooling, and listlessness are signs of heatstroke in animals. If you witness these signs in your pet, seek veterinary attention immediately, move the animal to a cool area and offer it drinking water.