Pets can love to go for a car ride, but as pet owners, we need to keep them safe.
When you travel with your pet in the car, you always want to have them safely restrained, so they don’t get hurt. Transport your pet in their pet carrier or crate, or get a pet restraint harness that acts like a seatbelt.
It’s also super important to never, ever leave your pet inside a car or truck on a hot day. Keep in mind the inside of a closed car can be more than 20 degrees hotter than the outside temperature. According to PETA, on a 78 degree day, the temperature inside a parked car can soar to between 100 and 120 degrees in just minutes. On a 90 degree day, the inside temperature of your car can be as high as 160 degrees in less than 10 minutes.
These high temperatures can kill a dog or cat. Animals can sustain brain damage or even die from heatstroke in just 15 minutes.
Another thing to keep in mind is the temperature of asphalt walking to and from the car. On an 87 degree day, asphalt or blacktop can reach 140 degrees. That’s hot enough to cause burns, permanent damage, and scarring on your dog’s feet, after just one minute of contact. Rapid burns and blistering can occur at 150 degrees. Hot sidewalks, pavement, and parking lots can not only burn paws, but can also reflect heat onto a dog’s body, increasing their risk of deadly heatstroke.
Always test the sidewalk or blacktop with your hand before starting to walk your dog on a hot day. If it’s too hot on your hand, it’s going to be too hot on your dog’s feet. Always carry water with you and give your pet a drink while they are traveling with you. On hot days, don’t make your dog wear a muzzle around their nose and mouth that can restrict their breathing. Dogs pant to cool off and regulate their internal body temperature.
Having a pet is a big responsibility. Our pets rely on us to take care of them and keep them safe. “How to Be a Responsible Pet Owner” shows how to love and respect your pet. Teach your kids what it really means to be a pet owner.