Hot Car Safety for Dogs

Hot Car Safety for Dogs

Posted Jun 17, 2019 in Dog Care

Getting in your car in the midst of summer can be brutally hot for both you and your dog. As dog lovers, we know to never leave a dog alone in a hot vehicle. But how do you keep them cool when you’re driving around with the air conditioning on yet the sun’s warmth is still seeping in, or when you first want to get in the car, but it feels more like an oven? To help your dog stay safe this summer here are some ways to keep them cool when you’re in the car.

Keep Your Seats Covered, Especially When You’re in Park

Covering your upholstery with blankets or towels is similar to parking in the shade. Your seats aren’t being directly hit by the sun and in effect won’t become burning hot when you or Fido try to sit on them. But even with a covering, you should always test the seat out first with your hands. If the fabric is too hot for your hand, it’s definitely too hot for your canine companion. If this is the case, it’s best to start your air conditioner first and allow the seats to cool off a bit before letting your dog jump in.

Invest in a Cooling Pad for your Dog

Using a cooling pad in your car can make a massive difference for your dog. Lay it out on the seat before your pup gets in to ensure they get a bit of extra cooling when they hop in your hot car. Your best option is to look for lightweight pads that are easy to clean, as well as having a lasting cooling effect. Cooling pads are especially helpful for long car rides where the sun may still be shining in your car, causing your dog to warm up even with the AC on. Other useful items are cooling jackets and bandanas made for dogs.

Use Sunshades to Keep Your Car Cool

This minor item can actually make a huge difference in keeping your car cool when the sun is beaming down on it. A reflective sun shade over the interior front window will help minimize the heat that comes through. This heat then gets trapped in your car, causing it to warm up quickly, but with a reflective sun shade that can be significantly decreased.

Keep Fido Hydrated

Keeping your pup hydrated can be tricky in a moving car when you don’t want to cause your furry friend to get sick or create a mess of water. There are a plethora of different travel dishes out there, but water bottles that are similar to the one’s rabbits use are the ideal item. Take it slowly and don’t let your dog drink too much all at once. If they do end up getting sick, you’ll know roughly what their limit is and pull back on their food and water intake.

What to Do if You See a Dog Locked in a Hot Car

The first thing you should do if you see a dog locked in a hot car is to assess the situation. Does the dog look like it’s in critical condition or having a heat stroke? If not start by contacting the authorities – a non-emergency number or local animal control, keep these saved in your phone for easy access. Once you’ve reached the proper authorities, take down the car’s information as well as pictures of the scene. If you’re in the parking lot of a specific business, you can even go inside and ask them to try and page the possible owner.

Your furry friend can become easily overheated, making them uncomfortable and in many cases, unsafe. By being proactive about the heat and keeping your pup cool, you’ll be making a world’s difference for them, keeping them happy and healthy all summer long.

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