Safe Travel with Your Dog

Perhaps you love to take your dog wherever you go.  That’s understandable; after all, very few people express the sheer joy a dog does at the prospect of going for a ride with us. Dogs pass no judgment on our driving nor do they fret that we may overspend on a shopping spree. 

Given the delight their company gives us, we need to be aware of the risks of leaving a dog in the car, even for short periods of time, as temperatures climb.

On a pleasant 72 degree day, the temperature inside a car can be 20 degrees higher. When it is 85 degrees outside, it only takes ten minutes for the inside of a car to reach 102 degrees, even when the windows are left open two inches.  Within 30 minutes, a car’s interior can reach 120 degrees.  Shade does not help much and it moves with the sun.

While any animal can overheat and suffer heat stroke or death, young animals, elderly animals, overweight animals, and those with short muzzles or thick coats are most at risk.

If you need to make a stop where your dog will have to stay in the car on a warm day, you may want to consider leaving your pal at home. While you may only plan to be gone for a few minutes, unplanned delays can occur that could put your canine friend at risk.

If you do opt to bring your dog, plan to frequent businesses and restaurants where pets are welcome or use the drive-through offered at most banks and many restaurants and pharmacies.

Keep in mind that asphalt absorbs the heat of the sun and can burn sensitive paws. Walk your pet on grass or dirt whenever possible. Your pet will need more water when it’s hot out too, so be sure to bring a bowl and water along for the ride.

What to do if you see a dog in a car on a hot day? Note the car’s color, make, model and license plate; go into the store and ask management to page the owner. If the owner cannot be reached, you can call animal services for assistance. Washoe County Regional Animal Services dispatch phone # is 322-3647 (DOGS).

Only the most devoted animal lovers take their dogs wherever they go, but when it’s hot out, home may be the safest place for our canine friends.  

Events that Help Homeless Pets.

Size Does Matter: Adult pets are calmer and easier to introduce to your household. Adopt any cat that weighs 10 lbs or more for $10 and any dog 40 lbs or more for just $40 now through May 20. More information: or 775-856-2000.

Create a Legacy for the Animals: Free Charitable Estate Planning Workshop, May 12 (10 am) and 17 (5:30 pm), at Nevada Humane Society presented by Heidi Foster of American Wealth Management.

Free Spay/Neuter for Cats in Zip Codes 89502, 89506, and 89433 for a limited time. To make an appointment, call the NHS Clinic at 775-856-2000 extension 312.

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