WHAT SHOULD YOU DO WHEN YOU SEE A PET IN A HOT CAR? WE HAVE TIPS FROM AN EXPERT



 

We get this question A LOT in our FB group, Hello Ridgefield & Fairfield County:


"There is a dog locked in a car and it's HOT outside, what should I do?"

Summer is just getting started, but we have already hit a few 90 degree days. We knew this question would pop up. So we reached out to Ridgefield's Animal Control Officer, Kris Zulkeski for advice and tips.




HFC: If we see an animal in distress, locked in a car with windows rolled up, what should our first step be?


ACO Kris: If you see a dog left alone in a hot car, take down the car's color, make, and license plate number. Call your local Animal Control, or the police non-emergency line... immediately. If possible, have someone keep an eye on the dog. Or better, don't leave until officials arrive on scene. It is highly discouraged that you take these situations into your own hands.


HFC: Do we call 911 or should we use the non emergency line?


ACO Kris: Absolutely use the NON emergency line. It is best to call Animal Control first, as we are prepared to handle these types of situations.


HFC: How long after we see the animal should we call?


ACO Kris: Call right away. A dog in distress from heat stroke is a medical emergency! Remember minutes matter as dogs can suffer heatstroke, including irreversible damage and even death, in a very short amount of time. And by the time you come across the dog, you won’t be able to know how long he or she has been in that situation.


HFC: What are the signs of an animal in distress?


ACO Kris:

Anxiety/Pacing

Wide eyes

Fervent barking as if in distress

Intense scratching or digging at windows or doors trying to escape

Excessive panting with exaggerated long tongue

Extreme drooling, salivating

Change in color of the gums (blueish purple, bright red or pale from lack of oxygen)

Labored or trouble breathing

Disorientation, stumbling or poor coordination

Diarrhea or vomiting

Collapse or loss of consciousness

Seizure




HFC: The take-away: PLEASE LEAVE YOUR DOG AT HOME when it's hot outside!

Their life isn't worth your "quick trip" into the store.


And if you see a dog in distress, call your local ACO right away.


A special thanks to Kris Zulkeski

Ridgefield ACO

203-431-2711

203-431-2712


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