Keep pets out of hot cars in summer

Published 8:09 pm Thursday, July 8, 2010

To the Editor:

On Wednesday at 3 p.m., the temperature in Columbus was approximately 95 degrees. I watched a true act of stupidity as a woman exited her car, locking her dog inside with only two back windows cracked about two inches. She went shopping and did not return to the car for 20 minutes. By that time, the police had been summoned and had responded, informing the woman that she could not leave an animal in a car for even two or three minutes. She claims she was only inside for five minutes. I wonder how long that 20 minutes would have seemed had she been the one locked in the car with no air. This woman claims she wont do this again. I wonder.

Studies show that even in 72 degree weather, the temperature inside a car can rise to 116 degrees within only a few minutes. In 95 degree weather, the temperature can reach 160 degrees within a very few minutes. Dogs can experience nerve damage, brain damage, heart problems, liver damage and even death from exposure to excessive temperatures for even a short period of time.

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Dogs are the most loyal and loving of all Gods creatures and our responsibility is to care for them and make reasonable accommodations for their safety. While it may seem that your fur baby would love a ride in the car, please leave him or her at home and not in an unbearably hot car. If you see this happen, please attempt to locate the owner. If this is not possible, summon local law enforcement. They are quick to respond and can offer assistance to the animal if needed.

Zelda Howell