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Pets And Hot Vehicles Are A Dangerous Mix

With record high temperatures expected this week the BC SPCA reminds pet owners not to leave their animals in parked vehicles.

The temperature in a parked vehicle, even in the shade with windows partially opened, can rapidly reach a level that can seriously harm or even kill a pet.

Elizabeth Dighton, Manager of the Williams Lake and District SPCA goes over some of the symptoms of heatstroke you should watch for.

“Exaggerated panting. Rapid or erratic pulse. A big change in their behavior, lack of coordination, muscle tremors, lots of drooling, they can also get to the point where they just collapse, that’s when you rush them to the vet.”

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If your pet shows symptoms of heatstroke Dighton had this advice.

“Immediately move the animal to a cool shady place. Wet the dog with cool water. Do not apply ice as it constricts blood flow, which will inhibit cooling. Allow the animal to drink some cool water or to lick ice cream if no water is available, and take the animal to a veterinarian as soon as possible for further treatment.”

Lorie Chortyk, General Manager of Communications for the BC SPCA said last year they responded to more than 800 calls about animals in distress in hot cars.

The BC SPCA urges pet owners to leave their animals at home when running errands on a hot day.

“If you will need to leave them in a parked vehicle, even for a few minutes, don’t take them.” Chortyk said, “Your dog will be much happier, and safer, at home with shade and plenty of fresh cool water.”

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