“Too hot for Spot and Tot”: urgent alert to be launched locally


For immediate release:
June 14, 2022

Nicole Meyer 202-483-7382

Salt Lake City – Following reports that Salt Lake County Animal Services officers have already responded to 120 calls about dogs left in hot cars this year before the summer has even really warmed up, PETA plans to release a message dizzying local reminding people that leaving pets or children in vehicles unattended can quickly become fatal.

Within minutes, the temperature inside a parked car can reach 94 degrees per day at 75 degrees or 109 degrees per day at 90 degrees. As the temperature rises, dogs experience excruciating symptoms: they go into shock, vomit blood, urinate and have diarrhea, and may exhibit multi-organ failure, cardiorespiratory arrest, fluid accumulation in lungs, muscle tremors, convulsions, loss of consciousness and, finally, death.

“Within minutes, the internal temperature of a parked car can reach lethal triple digits,” says Daphna Nachminovitch, senior vice president of PETA. “PETA reminds everyone to keep children and pets out of hot cars, because no race is worth risking the life of a loved one.”

Already this year, 10 dogs and four children have died in burning cars. In 2021, at least 59 animals died from heat-related causes and 145 other animals are said to have been rescued from life-threatening situations – and since these numbers only include incidents reported in the media, the actual numbers are certainly much higher.

Anyone who sees a child or dog in a parked car should take immediate action: Write down the color, make, model, and license plate number of the vehicle, and rush to have nearby businesses contact the owner. If they can’t be found, call 911 and if authorities don’t respond, do whatever it takes to save a life.

PETA urges everyone to be on the lookout for dogs that need help in extreme temperatures, including those who may be exhibiting symptoms of heat stroke, and advises doing the following:

  • Put the palm on the pavement before walks to ensure that it will not burn the pads of the dogs feet.
  • Be alert for a long, curled tongue and heavy panting, as dogs cannot sweat like humans can and heat builds up inside their bodies.
  • Walk only in shade or on dirt or grass, andnever leave animals outside in extreme heat. Last summer, PETA field workers discovered the body of a dog that had died after being left chained up in the scorching sun, and there were similar reports around the country.

PETA — whose motto reads, in part, that “animals do not belong to us to abuse them in any way” — opposes speciesism, a human supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on Twitter, FacebookWhere instagram.

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Jennifer R. Strohm