The Ontario government is “strongly urging” everyone to ensure their pet is not left unattended in a vehicle during the hot summer weather.
Temperatures inside a vehicle can quickly become much hotter than the temperature outside even if the windows are opened slightly.
According to the Province, this can put pets at risk of serious illness and possibly death.
Therefore, if a pet can’t go to the destination, they should be left at home where they can be “safe, cool, and comfortable.”
“It is critically important to ensure all pets are protected from the potential fatal effects of the hot summer sun,” Solicitor General Sylvia Jones said in a statement.
“Leaving pets to suffer in a sweltering vehicle will not be tolerated and we have adopted tough new laws to deter this type of reckless behaviour in the province.”
Ontario is the first jurisdiction in Canada to implement a full provincial government-based animal welfare enforcement system.
The Provincial Animal Welfare Services (PAWS) Act came into effect on January 1, 2020, and allows police, First Nations constables and provincial animal welfare inspectors to enter motor vehicles to help pets in distress.
The legislation also has the strongest penalties in the country for people who violate animal welfare laws, including causing distress to animals.
“If you see an animal in a hot car and are concerned the animal’s life is in immediate danger, dial 911. Members of the public should not attempt to enter a vehicle in these situations,” the Province says.