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Filling the car with the family, the dog and the kitchen sink is all part of the charm of a Scottish summer heatwave. Being safe while taking the trip is all part of it!
Macklin Motors

Need to Rescue a Dog in a Hot Car?

Need to Rescue a Dog in a Hot Car?

We all should know by now; we should never leave our pawfect pals in the car in hot – even warm – weather. Temperatures inside a car can be almost double the temperature outside.

So, be a hero, and be prepared if you see a hot dog in distress.

What to look for?

If you spot a dog unattended in hot weather inside a car appearing to be suffering from heatstroke, ring 999. The police are covered to gain access to a vehicle in an emergency situation.

What are the symptoms of canine heatstroke?

You may see the dog:

- Panting heavily

- Drooling excessively

- Lethargic, drowsy or unco-ordinated

- Collapsed or vomiting

What to do next

Most people wouldn’t think twice about breaking a car window in order to get to a pooch in distress. However, care must be taken with this instinct. Without proper justification, breaking into a car could be categorised as criminal damage. This would mean you’d have to defend your actions in Court.

Dog in car in heatwave blog

There’s no time!

If the situation is critical and the police cannot get to the scene fast enough, there are a few steps you can take to cover yourself.

- Let the police know what you are about to do.

- Take a few videos and pictures of the scene.

- Take the names and contact details of any witnesses.

These three factors will provide evidence if the owner of the car decides to press charges. And also give evidence to support the lawful reason to commit damage if you think the owner of the dog would have given consent if they had been present.

The dog is out!

The dog is out of the car! But it still needs your help.

- Find a cool, shaded spot for the pooch.

- Immediately dose the dog with cool water. Not ice cold – we want to avoid shock. If you have access to cool towels or a fan, all the better.

- Give the dog small, regular sips of water.

- Keep this up until the dog’s breathing settles – but not to the point that the dog is shivering. At this point you should contact a qualified veterinarian for immediate medical attention.

- Lastly, pat yourself on the back for being a good human!

If the dog isn’t displaying signs of heatstroke...

...there are still plenty of things you can do to help!

- Check the parking ticket, if there is one, to work out how long the dog has been there.

- Take down the car’s registration plate details. You can use this to report them if you need to.

- Check any nearby shops or businesses, perhaps ask them to make an announcement for the owner.

- If possible, remain with the dog or have someone else stay with the dog. This way, if the situation escalates to emergency level 999 can be called immediately.

- Our friends at the RSPCA are always happy to help. Their 24-hour cruelty line 0300 1234 999 will give you much-needed advice.

It may seem common sense to most that you don’t leave a dog in a hot car. However, it happens. Be sure to spread the word of how to help our four-legged friends in a time of need!

Learn more this #DOGvember!