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Keep Fido at home, not in the car

(Fort McMurray, AB – July 10, 2017) – With the hot summer weather here, Bylaw Services reminds you of the health risks to consider for our four legged friends in the heat. 

Our furry companions are unable to sweat and lower their body temperatures like we are. Dogs and cats only cool off through panting and through the pads of their paws.

Although your pets may make great company during errands, it is safer for them to stay home. The internal temperature of a parked vehicle can climb to dangerous levels in a short amount of time. Vehicle interiors can reach temperatures that can cause heat stroke in as littles as ten minutes, even with the windows slightly opened or parking in the shade.

If you see an animal in a vehicle, check for the following distress signs: 

  • excessive panting or drooling
  • tongue is bright red or bluish/purple
  • frantic behaviour trying to find a way out or cooler air
  • lethargic and unresponsive
  • loss of control of bowels

If any of these signs are present, take down the license plate number and the make/model of the vehicle and call Animal Control at 780-788-4200 or Wood Buffalo RCMP at 780-788-4000. Wait by the vehicle for help to arrive. 

Do not break the car window and remove the pet. Besides the risk of charges related to damage or theft, the animal is unfamiliar with you and may react with aggression, the animal may escape and run into traffic, or pieces of broken glass may injure the pet, as well as yourself. 


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