OKLAHOMA CITY – As dangerous temperatures continue to plague the state, experts are warning pet owners about the dangers associated with hot concrete.
On an 87 degree day, asphalt temperatures can reach 140 degrees in the sun, which could cause burns to a dog’s paws. Experts also stress that hot sidewalks can reflect heat onto dogs’ bodies, which can increase their risk for deadly heatstroke.
Before you head out to take your dog on a walk, owners should test the pavement with their hand.
If the pavement is too hot, you can walk your dog in the morning or late at night. Also, carry water, take frequent breaks in shady spots and never make the dogs wear muzzles that can restrict their breathing or panting.
To protect humans and pets this summer, PETA has provided the following tips:
- Never leave anyone inside a hot vehicle: Temperatures inside vehicles can climb well above the temperature outside a car in a matter of minutes. Dogs can rapidly succumb to heatstroke even if a vehicle is parked in the shade with the windows down.
- If you see an animal left alone inside a car, call humane authorities or 911 immediately: Remain on the scene until authorities arrive.
- To treat suspected heat stroke: Wrap a cool, wet towel around the head and neck without covering the eyes, nose or mouth. Also, wring it out, resoak and reapply it every few minutes. Pour lukewarm water over the animal’s body and wipe excess water away, especially from the abdomen and hind legs. Take the animal to a veterinarian immediately.
“Every year, we alert people to the danger of leaving children or pets inside cars in the summer,” says Chief of Police James R. Kruger Jr. from Oak Brook, Illinois. “The temperature inside a vehicle climbs approximately 43 degrees in just an hour. The loss of a defenseless animal in this manner is avoidable and should never happen. There is no reason to take your pet out in extreme heat without adequate air conditioning and water.”