IT’S HOT IN HERE!!!!

Your Car Is an Oven

The recent story about the individual leaving two dogs in car in Poughkeepsie leading to their deaths is so disheartening and frustrating.   DON’T YOU PEOPLE GET IT?   There are articles and warnings about how hot a car can get published every summer just like this post.  Yet every year, thousands of dogs die because people think, “It won’t happen to me.”  “I’ll just be a few minutes.”  “The cracked window is enough”.  It’s NOT!   YOUR CAR HEATS UP SO FAST IT’S MORE THAN AN OVEN- IT’S ALMOST A MICROWAVE!

Every year there are lots of warnings posted in print and online about the dangers of leaving animals and children in a car during the heat of summer. Every year many animals and even children die because someone has left them unattended in a vehicle. Every year I see dogs in cars out in the sun. DON”T PEOPLE GET IT?

CRACKING A WINDOW DOES NOT HELP! People think leaving a window open a few inches provides enough air flow to keep the interior from getting dangerously hot. Studies have shown this makes no difference. Air temperatures inside a car can climb very quickly to fatal levels. The table below gives some idea of how quickly the danger develops. 

 Estimated Vehicle Interior Air Temperature v. Elapsed Time

Estimated Vehicle Interior Air Temperature v. Elapsed Time

Elapsed time

Outside Air Temperature (F)

 

70

75

80

85

90

95

 

0 minutes

70

75

80

85

90

95

 

10 minutes

89

94

99

104

109

114

 

20 minutes

99

104

109

114

119

124

 

30 minutes

104

109

114

119

124

129

 

40 minutes

108

113

118

123

128

133

 

50 minutes

111

116

121

126

131

136

 

60 minutes

113

118

123

128

133

138

 

> 1 hour

115

120

125

130

135

140

 

Courtesy Jan Null, CCM; Department of Geosciences, San Francisco State University

That’s right. In the time it takes you to just “run into the store” temps inside the car climb to 120 degrees on a 90 degree day. That’s quickly fatal. That quick “run into the store” can kill your dog or child. Think twice before leaving them behind.

What can you do if you see an animal left behind in a car? Here are some basic tips from the Humane Society of the United States:

How to help a pet left in a hot car

  • Take down the car’s make, model and license-plate number.
  • If there are businesses nearby, notify their managers or security guards and ask them to make an announcement to find the car’s owner.
  • If the owner can’t be found, call the non-emergency number of the local police or animal control and wait by the car for them to arrive.
  • Call 911 only if absolutely needed
  • Taking matters into your own hands like breaking a window is not recommended and can result in legal actions against you. Only a police officer, peace officer, or legal agent of a humane society can seize a dog from a locked car in New York State.

    The owner of the dog will be fined and can even be charged with animal cruelty. Why take this risk? IT IS NEVER WORTH TAKING THE RISK!

    You can help by distributing the flyers provided by the Humane Society of the United States found at the following link:

    http://www.humanesociety.org/assets/pdfs/pets/hot_car_flyer.pdf

    Please help every animal lover understand that his or her car is an oven. Leaving any animal unattended in a car in full sun for even a short period of time, even with a window slightly open, is dangerous and potentially fatal. Let’s stop this dangerous behavior.

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

 

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  • Blog Author

    Dr. James Zgoda

    Education: University of Pennsylvania, B.A. Animal Behavior 1980 Rutgers Univ., M.S. Zoology 1981 Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine, D.V.M., 1985 Owner and chief veterinarian of Otterkill Animal Hospital in Campbell Hall, NY ... Read Full
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