Summit Tip – Dogs in Car During Heat

By Brenda Crispin…

Hi Everyone,

The heat has finally arrived.  Although I want it to stay for a long time it does add some new wrinkles to our traveling and  socializing the Summit dogs.

It takes only minutes for a pet left in a vehicle on a warm day to succumb to heatstroke and suffocation. Most people don’t realize how hot it can get in a parked car on a balmy day. However, on a 70 degree day, temperatures in a car parked in the shade can exceed 90 degrees — and hit a scorching 160 degrees if parked in the sun!

Even when the outside air temperature is in the 60s, temperatures inside some vehicles can reach the danger zone on bright, sunny days. So many experts recommend not to leave dogs in your car even for short periods if the temperature is in the 60s or higher.

Rolling down a window or parking in the shade doesn’t guarantee protection either, since temperatures can still climb into the danger zone. And if the window is rolled down sufficiently, the dog can escape.

So the question is how do we go about getting our dogs out to public spaces when it is hot and get our errands done?  You don’t.  The answer is they are separate activities.  Remember taking your dog out for a socialization activity is about training your dog not doing your needed errands.  This is true in the dead of winter or the heat of summer.

I am attaching two charts that show how fast a car will heat up.

Enjoy the warm weather and be sure your dogs have plenty of fresh water.  I carry several jugs in my car along with a bowl.

Thank you all,

Brenda Crispin
Foster Home Coordinator
Summit Assistance Dogs
360-865-0527
brenda@summitdogs.org