Feeling the Heat: We Need You to Protect Animals
The hot temperatues of summer pose a real threat to our animals. Please take extra caution to keep your pets safe, and be vigilant with neighbors and when you're out in the community to recognize potentially dangerous situations. We need you to speak up and take action to protect our furry companions.
Outside pets must have constant access to water and shade. Please leave your pet(s) at home when driving around town. The temperatures inside a car quickly reach dangerous levels, and leaving windows open is not enough to make the situation safe. If the temperature is over 80 degrees, it is against the law to leave your pet inside a car in Lawrence. It is also illegal to leave your car running unattended, so keeping the A/C on while you run inside a store for that "quick" errand is not an option. If you see anyone neglecting an animal or a pet confined inside a car, please report it to Animal Control at 785-832-7650 or call 911.
Even if you are a conscientious pet owner, please be vigilant with friends, family, neighbors, etc., helping them know the facts about pets and heat. It truly is up to all of us to recognize a critical situation if we see one, and to help educate others who just don’t think about how serious this is. Taking a few simple steps can help keep pets safe.
Make sure pets have access to water and shade, and plenty of it. Stabilize pets’ water bowls or be sure to check on them regularly in case they knock them over. Make sure pets have shade; they need relief from the sun’s heat. Remember, dark-furred dogs, or breeds with short stubby noses, like boxers or bulldogs, tend to overheat even more quickly, so pay special attention to them. And shaved dogs can suffer sunburn just like we do. They need protection.
As much as they may beg to go along in the car, our pets are best left at home if we’re running errands. A car in the summer can heat up to 200 degrees in very short order, and leaving windows open is of no help. If the temperature is over 80 degrees, it is against the law to leave your pet inside the car. It is also illegal to leave your car running unattended, so keeping the AC on while you run inside a store for that “quick” errand is not an option.
When walking our dogs, remember that asphalt and cement retain heat and radiate it back upward. If we are uncomfortable, imagine how much hotter it is even closer to the surface, where dogs’ noses are. Remember too, our dogs are going barefooted, making them susceptible to burned footpads. When you take your pet out always bring water to help them stay hydrated.
Running or biking with your dog is not a good idea unless it’s early in the morning when it’s not so hot. Dogs unaccustomed to exercise need to start slowly, just like we do, and not all animals can go as long or as far as we do. When you take your pet out always bring water to help them stay hydrated. (Yes, we repeated this statement; it is that important!)
Summer brings mosquitoes, ticks, and fleas, all spreading a bevy of diseases among pets. Lyme Disease and Ehrlichiosis, among others, are dangerous diseases from ticks. Perhaps the most serious may be heartworms (usually fatal if untreated), which are spread by mosquitoes. Insect problems can be avoided by checking with your vet.
Summer can be a good time for us to enjoy our pets if we are careful. If you see anyone neglecting an animal or an animal inside a car, please report it to the Humane Society at 785-843-6835, or to Animal Control at 785-832-7650 so we can help correct the situation. All reports will remain confidential.
We owe it to our “best friends” to look out for them.