THE RSPCA is urging pet owners not to forget their animals as summer seems to have finally arrived, with temperatures soaring into the high twenties.
The animal welfare charity is reminding people of how hazardous the inside of the vehicle can be for dogs.
It is concerned that people are not taking on advice and are continuing to leave their animals in places that are far too hot.
RSPCA Animal centre manager Darren Parrish said: “With the changeable weather recently people may have been even more forgetful than usual about how hazardous the inside of a vehicle may be for an animal.
“Most people seem to know the ‘don’t leave dogs in hot cars’ message, but I think they just don’t think anything bad will happen to their pets, particularly if they’re just leaving them for a few minutes.
“What people need to realise is that the next animal to die in a hot car, conservatory or outbuilding could be their pet - that’s how serious this is.”
With temperatures set to stay in the mid to high twenties for the next few days and even into next week, the RSPCA is expecting calls to its cruelty and advice line to soar.
All too often, owners make the mistake of thinking it is sufficient to leave a bowl of water or a window open for their pet but this is not enough to protect them from heatstroke, which can have fatal consequences. Even a hot garden without shade can be disastrous for an animal. As an example, the temperature inside a vehicle can soar to 47 degrees within 60 minutes when the outside temperature is just 22 degrees.
Other key points are:
All dogs will suffer, but some dogs are more prone to heatstroke. For example, dogs that are old, young, short nosed, long haired, overweight or heavily muscled are more at risk, as well as dogs with certain diseases.
Cloud cover can disappear quickly.
Temperatures in air conditioned cars can reach the same temperature as outside within just five minutes of the air conditioning being turned off.
With the temperature set to rocket, RSPCA centres and branches across the country are dusting off the paddling pools, sprinklers and hoses - not for staff but for the animals, in a bid to keep them cool and comfy!