AUSTIN (KXAN) — People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals — or PETA — is reminding pet owners to be conscious of summer heating risks for their dogs.
According to the organization, there have been at least 71 reported hot weather-related animal deaths since last year.
The organization is offering several tips to keep dogs safe in extremely hot weather:
- Keep animals indoors. Unlike humans, dogs can sweat only through their footpads and cool themselves by panting, so even brief sun exposure can have life-threatening consequences.
- Never leave an animal inside a hot vehicle. Temperatures can quickly soar in parked cars, and a dog trapped inside can die from heatstroke within minutes — even if the car is in the shade with the windows slightly open, which has little to no effect on lowering the temperature inside the car.
- Avoid hot pavement. When outdoor temperatures reach the 80s, asphalt temperatures can climb to 140 degrees, causing pain, burns, and permanent damage to dogs’ paws after just a few minutes of contact. Walk dogs on grass whenever possible, and avoid walking in the middle of the day. Never run with dogs in hot weather — they’ll collapse before giving up, at which point, it may be too late to save them.
To keep up with heat and weather conditions throughout the summer, visit kxan.com/weather or download the KXAN Weather app.