By Keir Chapman SYRACUSE, N.Y (NCC News) — It has been less than a week since the start of summer, but Syracuse is already feeling the heat. With higher temperatures come higher risks for pets.
According to PETA, there were 58 reported animal deaths related to heat across the country in 2018. Multiple deaths were related to animals being left in the car on a hot day. Temperatures inside a vehicle are higher than outside due to a greenhouse effect. Solar radiation gets partially trapped inside the car, making it hotter.
Animals can get heatstroke similar to humans. According to Dee Schaefer of CNY SPCA, it doesn’t take long for animals to start developing symptoms either. She said signs can start as fast as 10 minutes. Schaefer said she knows what it’s like to sit in a hot car, and empathizes with animals that can’t get out.
“I know how I feel in the summer when I’m sitting in the car and the air conditioning is not on,” Schaefer said. “I have the ability to get out, they don’t.”
A study by Red Rover proved leaving a window cracked open didn’t help alleviate the greenhouse effect caused by the car’s windows. Schaefer said the best course of action is to leave an animal at home when it gets too hot. If a situation arises where a pet needs to be left in the car, Schaefer said to make the trip quick.
“Don’t be out of your car for more than five minutes,” Schaefer said.
To ensure animals are protected from the heat when not in the car, Schaefer recommended walking pets early in the morning or later in the day. Animals can get second degree burns on their paw pads if the ground is too hot. She also said to ensure their water bowls are full throughout the day.