DOG owners have been warned to keep a close eye on their pets this Easter weekend as temperatures soar to 22C.
Beautiful spring weather is on the way, with stunning sunshine forecast across the country.
The dangers of leaving a pet in a hot car are known – but animal protection groups also point out the risk of walking in the heat.
Representatives from groups such as the RSPCA, Battersea Dogs and Cars Home, the Dogs Trust and the Kennel Club have joined forces for the Dogs Die On Hot Walks campaign.
Esme Wheeler, RSPCA dog welfare expert, said: “It’s great that we can expect some warm weather for the long Easter weekend and no doubt many people will be driving out for a break, day trips or long walks in the sunshine.
“However, even mild warm weather can pose serious risks to our pets, so it’s really important that we do everything we can to make them comfortable and safe.
“The message is simple: Never leave a dog in a hot car.
“‘Not long is too longand if you see a dog in a hot car, call 999 immediately.”
She said many are disregarding the ‘very clear’ message – which means their pets could die.
“Despite our very clear message every year, some people still leave their dogs in hot cars think there is no risk,” She said.
“Many more walk their dogs in hot weather when the sidewalks are scorching hot.
“It’s so important to remember not to leave an animal in a vehicle or caravan, or in a conservatory or outbuilding where temperatures can rise quickly.
“This is also the case when it doesn’t feel so warm outside.
“A lot of people still think it’s okay to leave a dog in the car on a warm day if the windows are left open or they’re parked in the shade, but the truth is, It is still a very dangerous situation for the dog.”
When the heat reaches 22°C outdoors, it will be up to 47°C inside a vehicle.
“If your dog has an underlying health condition – particularly if it’s affecting their breathing – then they could overheat even in relatively cold weather,” Esme said.
dr Dan O’Neill, from the Royal Veterinary College, added: “The most dangerous times of year are often early spring when we have a sudden spell of heat that catches owners off guard.
“It can take weeks for a dog to adjust to hot weather, so if it’s been a cold winter then Early spring heat can be particularly dangerous.”
Anyone who discovers a dog in a hot car is urged to call 999.
Anyone who feels the need to break a window in a critical situation should be warned that this may be classified as property damage without proper justification.
Photographs or recordings of the dog can be used as evidence, while witnesses should provide their names and numbers.
As soon as the dog gets out of the car, it should be taken to a shady or cool place and doused with water. Small amounts of cool water should be given.
How to keep your dog cool in hot weather
According to the RSPCA, the best ways to keep pets comfortable in the heat are:
- Never leave your dog in a hot car
- Never leave your pets in a vehicle or trailer, or in a conservatory or outbuilding
- Exercise dogs early in the morning and late in the evening when temperatures are cooler
- Avoid overexerting dogs in warm weather and do not encourage them to overexert themselves while playing
- If you know your dog has an underlying medical condition, then use extra caution in hot weather or consider skipping walks altogether
- Always provide constant access to fresh, clean water and a cool, shaded resting area
- Avoid dogs on long days in the heat; Sidewalks can get very hot in warm weather – if you can’t put your hand on the ground for five seconds, it’s too hot for your pooch’s paws too
- If necessary, use pet-safe sunscreen on exposed areas of your pet’s skin
- Whether you’re taking your pet with you or looking for a safe place for them to stay while you’re away, check out our Holiday advice for pet owners
https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/18264960/deadly-dog-warning-spring-heat-weather-rspca/ Deadly dog alert for Easter pet owners as temperatures soar to 22C