Digital Media Center
Bryant-Denny Stadium, Gate 61
920 Paul Bryant Drive
Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0370
(800) 654-4262

© 2024 Alabama Public Radio
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Alternatives to Leaving Your Pet in a Parked Car

Pets don't sweat - they pant, and when all they have to breathe is overheated air it can be deadly for the animal.
in hiatus
Pets don't sweat - they pant, and when all they have to breathe is overheated air it can be deadly for the animal.

It may still be Springtime, but in many parts of the country it is warm enough to feel like Summer, with temperatures in the mid-70’s and higher.  That also means it’s time to talk about protecting your pet on these sunny days.

     We don’t have a dog right now, but I remember how much our canine friends loved to get outside in warmer weather and run and play.  Running loose on city streets is not safe for any dog, so look for a dog park near you.  If you take your dog to the park, don’t plan on making any other stops, where you might have to leave your dog alone in the car.  When the temperature is only 70° outside, the inside of a car can be 90° or more in just minutes, even with the windows cracked.  On an 85° day, the inside of your car could be over 100°, again in just minutes.  And leaving the air conditioning running will not protect your pet if it stops working while you are away.

     But - there are some alternatives to leaving your dog alone in the car.

     One option is to bring a human friend with you, who can hold the leash and let your dog walk around while you are taking care of business indoors. 

     Another option is to shop at a pet-friendly store.  In fact, most pet supply stores will allow you to bring your pet inside, as long as it’s on a leash.

     Drive-thru places may be a good choice, or a store where you called in your order, or placed an order online, and someone brings it out to your vehicle when you arrive.  Just make sure your furry friend cannot get out the open door or tailgate when the store employee is loading your purchases in your car.

     One more option – leave your pet at home, safe and sound, and cool, when you run your errands.  When you get back, your best friend will be there, healthy, and happy to see you, when you’re speaking of pets.

Mindy Norton has been “Speaking of Pets” on Alabama Public Radio since 1995.