War­ning: don’t le­a­ve your dog in a hot car

George Herald - - Arts & Entertainment -

Calls to at­tend to dogs found in ba­king hot cars are a nig­ht­ma­re for the SPCA du­ring the sum­mer ho­li­day se­a­son. Dogs are at gre­a­ter risk of dying w­hen left in a hot car than a ba­by!

W­hen the out­si­de tem­pe­ra­tu­re is 28°C, in just eig­ht mi­nu­tes the tem­pe­ra­tu­re in a clo­sed car par­ked in the sun roc­kets to 45°... and e­ven if the win­dows are all o­pen, it will climb to 37°.

Dogs ha­ve no swe­at g­lands - the on­ly way t­hey can try and cool do­wn is by pan­ting. Pan­ting pulls air o­ver the wet sur­fa­ce of their ton­gue and na­sal pas­sa­ges and helps cool the b­lood in the veins run­ning un­der tho­se sur­fa­ces. But it al­so u­ses up oxy­gen and in an in­suf­fi­cient­ly ven­ti­la­ted car, oxy­gen de­ple­ti­on le­ads to in­ter­nal or­gans shut­ting do­wn and being da­ma­ged. T­his can cau­se de­ath, so­meti­mes days af­ter being o­ver­he­a­ted!

Should you see a dog in ob­vi­ous dis­tress in a hot car, call your ne­a­rest SPCA with the po­si­ti­on of the car and its co­lour, ma­ke and re­gis­tra­ti­on num­ber, so t­hey can ta­ke acti­on.

SPCA Ge­or­ge: 044 878 1990. E­mer­gen­cies, on­ly af­ter hours: 082 378 7384. Le­a­ving a dog in a clo­sed car is a cri­mi­nal of­fen­ce and per­pe­tra­tors can be pro­se­cu­ted un­der the A­ni­mals Pro­tecti­on Act no 71 of 1962.

- Wen­dy Jo­nes, SPCA vo­lun­teer

To cool do­wn an o­ver-he­a­ted dog, dou­se it with cool - not cold - wa­ter and gi­ve it cool wa­ter to drink. Co­ver it with a cool, wet to­wel until it stops pan­ting.

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