Dogs in Hot Cars and on Hot Pavement

Dog in a hot car

Every year, dogs suffer and die when their guardians make the mistake of leaving them in a parked car–even for "just a minute"—while they run an errand. Parked cars are deathtraps for dogs. On a warm day, the temperature in a car can exceed 120℉ in a matter of minutes

even with the windows partially open. Animals can sustain brain damage or even die from heatstroke in just 15 minutes. Beating the heat is extra tough for dogs because they can only cool themselves by panting.

Even in the shade, the temperature in the car can still soar quickly to dangerous levels. Leaving the windows open has little effect on how hot it is inside the car.

If you see a dog left alone in a hot car, call 9-1-1. Take down the car's color, make, model and license plate number. Have the owner paged at nearby stores. Many people are unaware of the danger of leaving pets in hot cars and will quickly return to their vehicle once they are alerted to the situation. Don’t leave the scene until the situation has been resolved.

Five Alternatives to Leaving your Dog in the Car:

  1. 1. Use the drive-through for errands when available.
  2. 2. Bring a friend who can play with your dog outside while you run your errand.
  3. 3. Shop at pet-friendly stores where your dog is welcome to browse with you.
  4. 4. Eat at an outdoor café where your dog can sit with you.
  5. 5. Leave your dog at home where it’s cool and safe.