The BC SPCA is sharing that they’ve received an increased number of distress calls for animals found in hot vehicles this year.
According to Community Relations Manager Lorie Chortyk, they’ve received approximately 400 calls just over halfway through June. The number can read a little startling, especially considering they received 1,000 in the entirety of last summer.
The increased numbers, however, may not be a step in the wrong direction. Chortyk explains that a reason for the increase in call volume could also be due to increased awareness and vigilance of people passing by.
With that in mind, the increased calls may not be a bad thing, after all, awareness and prevention are the first steps in avoiding animal harm in hot weather.
Regardless of what the increase in reports indicates, the BC SPCA still reminds people not to leave their pets in hot cars.
Chortyk shares that “people don’t realize how quickly their cars can become death traps” and that it takes “as little as 10 minutes for the vehicle to reach [life-threatening] temperatures.”
While the BC SPCA understand that intentions are usually good and that owners simply wish to take their pets with them, they’re simply safer (and more comfortable) at home.
Even if the window of a car is open, Chortyk explains, the temperature of a vehicle can still rise to an uncomfortable or dangerous temperature for your pet. Dogs, specifically, can’t release heat by sweating and are extremely susceptible to high temperatures.
People who pass by and witness a pet trapped in a hot vehicle are encouraged to call the BC SPCA hotline (1-855-622-7722). The BC SPCA warns that it is illegal for members of the public to break windows to access the vehicle themselves and that if possible, await assistance from the BC SPCA or RCMP.