EPD has had two hot dog calls in the past two days. Even a 70 degree day can be deadly to pets and with our current temperatures, it is not safe to go running errands with pets if you are leaving them in the vehicle.
On August 29 at 4:26 p.m., EPD Animal Services responded to the parking lot of the Tamarack Wellness Center, 3500 block of Donald Street, regarding a dog that was left inside a light green Toyota Prius in an unsuitable temperature without water. The owner of the vehicle, Tanya Marie Pitts, age 39, of Eugene, was contacted by the animal welfare officer and cited for Animal Neglect in the Second Degree.
On August 30 at 3:11 p.m., Eugene Police and Animal Services responded to the Willamette Street and W. 11th Avenue regarding a dog in distress in a dark blue 1995 Plymouth van, and observed the dog in the front seat of the vehicle. Police also found information that the temperature was unsuitable of the dog and there was no visible water available for the dog. Police were able to get the dog out, through an unlocked door, and then contacted the owner of the vehicle, Ray Edward Clark, age 68, of Cottage Grove. Clark was cited for Animal Neglect in the Second Degree.
With temperatures expected to rise over the next few days, Eugene Police Department is advising community members to take additional precautions to keep their pets safe. Do not leave animals in a car, they are at risk of experiencing heatstroke, which can be deadly in a short amount of time.
Animals can get dehydrated quickly, so give them plenty of fresh, clean water and make sure your pets have a shady place to get out of the sun. We recommend keeping them indoors when it is extremely hot and limiting their activity outdoors, especially on pavement.
Excessive panting and indications of discomfort are signs of heatstroke. If you believe your animal is experiencing heatstroke contact your veterinarian immediately.
Central Lane 911 says you should feel free to call 911 immediately anytime you see a pet in distress or in an unresponsive state even prior to locating an owner. In some cases it may be difficult to locate the responsible party putting that pet in further danger.
Here is an example of how quickly a vehicle heats up:
· Leave pets at home when running errands. Leaving your animal in a parked car, even for just a few minutes, can easily cause heat stroke or brain damage. On an 85-degree day, a car's interior temperature can climb to 104 degrees in 10 minutes, even with the windows slightly open. Dogs are especially vulnerable to heat stress because they do not sweat in the way that humans do; they release body heat by panting.
· Dogs should not ride in uncovered pickup truck beds. The hot metal truck bed can burn your pet’s paw pads.
· Keep pets inside during the heat of the day; do not leave them outside unattended.
· Make sure pets have access to water bowls full of cool, fresh water.
· When pets are outside, be sure to provide shaded areas for them to rest in and invest in a misting hose or kiddie pool for a cool place for your pets to play.
· Limit or skip on exercise and time at the dog park during the heat of the day.
· Always test the pavement or sand with your hand before setting out (too hot to touch is too hot for your pet), walk early in the morning or late at night when it’s cooler, carry water and take frequent breaks in shady spots. If you suspect your pet’s paws have been burned, contact your vet immediately.
Heatstroke symptoms can include: restlessness, excessive thirst, heavy panting, lethargy, lack of appetite, dark tongue, vomiting, and lack of coordination. If your animal is overcome by heat exhaustion, consult your veterinarian right away. If you notice an animal in distress or unresponsive in a parked car, first try and locate the pet’s owner and alert him or her to the animal’s condition. If you cannot find the animal’s owner quickly, call 911.