Dogs in hot cars

by Lorraine Williamson
Do not leave dogs in hot cars

Temperatures are soaring not only during the day, but also well into the evening. Therefore, it is important to be aware how hot cars can be. Afterall, they are mainly metal and glass.

At this time of year, perhaps we have left our car parked in the shade while we go for lunch. Or even for a visit to the beach. Then we return after a short time to find the car is no longer in the shade. We open the door, and it feels like an oven inside. The leather seats and steering wheel are too hot to touch.

Imagine again! We have left our car in the shade with the windows down a little and our dog in the car. We decide to pop out for a quick bite to eat with friends. Afterall, we will not be long!

Pets left in hot cars

It is a concern for many when we see pets left in cars. We may think everyone is aware of the dangers. However, every year pets still die from heat exhaustion because they are left in parked vehicles. Most people do not realise how much the temperature inside the car can rise in a short period of time.

This rise in temperature puts your pet at risk of serious illness and even death, even on a day that does not seem hot to you.

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Providing a bowl of water is not a solution, as that water is going to get warm as well. Therefore, it will not be much help in cooling down the dog.

So, what if you see any dogs in hot cars?

Although hearing a barking dog left in a car can be distressing, it does not necessarily mean the dog is in suffering. However, if you think there are signs of distress, excessive panting or worse, there are steps that you can take to help.

Report the situation

First, you must call the police and report it. The officers will decide the measures that must be taken when they see the condition of the animal inside the car.  They will attempt to find the owner or break the window.  Please note, it should ONLY be the officers that do this.

Only the police should break the windows

The police understand that you may want to act, but you must think on the consequences of your actions as pets are considered property. Also you may risk being attacked by the animal you are trying to save.  Therefore, the police must be the ones to make the decision to break the windows of any vehicle.  However, in extreme cases, if the vehicle is on fire or there is a risk that the animal will die before the police come, then in this situation, you may attempt to rescue the animal.

PROCEDURES TO TAKE HAVE BEEN CONFIRMED BY N332 (Spanish Police Officers who provide help and advice to foreigners regarding traffic, driving and motoring matters)

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