Imagine you were locked in a car under the sun, your body temperature rising with each passing moment. Oh yeah, you're also wearing a fur coat that covers your entire body. Not so pleasant, is it?
That terror and discomfort are exactly what your dog is feeling when you leave them locked in a hot car. Studies show that it only takes a few minutes for a parked car to reach an internal temperature over 67°C (153°F). Even opening the windows has a minimal effect on the rising temperature.
At temperatures like that, it's easy to suffer heatstroke and heat exhaustion. Human beings can sweat it out and can last way longer than dogs because dogs don't sweat.
If the police catch you leaving your pet in a hot car, here's what'll happen...
Studies prove that even on colder days, the internal temperature of a parked car can reach astronomical highs.
Jules Benson, medical director of Pet Plan Pet Insurance says that "the change of only a few degrees to a dog’s normal body temperature can quickly result in coma, organ dysfunction, permanent brain damage or even death."
According to Quebec's Animal Welfare and Safety regulations, you could be facing confiscation of your animal if you leave it in a hot parked car.
Article 42 states that "an inspector who has reasonable cause to believe that an animal is exposed to conditions that cause it significant suffering may [...] confiscate the animal so that it may be euthanized if the inspector has obtained the authorization".
Should inspectors see a dog locked in a parked car, they have the authorization to rescue the animal.
Article 41 of Quebec's Animal Welfare and Safety code says that "an inspector who has reasonable cause to believe that the welfare or safety of an animal that is in a vehicle or in any other enclosed place is compromised may use reasonable force to enter the vehicle or place in order to relieve or help the animal".
That means if you're caught, you now have to deal with a potentially smashed window. Keep in mind that you yourself aren't allowed to smash the window - call the authorities and let them deal with it.
If you love your dog, don't let it suffer in a hot car.
Next time you need to run in a store for 5 minutes and are thinking about leaving your dog in the car, don't.
If you spot a dog in a parked hot car, please contact the SPCA's emergency line at 514-735-2711.