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Dangers of Leaving a Pet in a Car

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Heatstroke is a deadly condition that can kill your beloved companion, even with emergency treatment. The best way to avoid this terrible situation is prevention.

The temperature in a car can soar to over 117 degrees within an hour when the temperature outside is just 72 degrees. Temperatures in a car after the air-conditioner has been turned off will match outside temperatures within five minutes.

Your dog's average body temperature is 100.5 to 102.5 degrees. If it rises to 105 or 106­ degrees, the dog is at risk for developing heat exhaustion. If the body temperature rises to 107 degrees, your dog has entered the dangerous zone of heatstroke. With heatstroke, irreversible damage and death can occur.

Humidity interferes with animals' ability to rid themselves of excess body heat. When humans overheat, they sweat, and when the sweat dries, it takes excess heat with it. Our four-legged friends only perspire around their paws, which is not enough to cool the body. To rid themselves of excess heat, animals pant.

Leaving the window open a crack or leaving some water will make little difference and still leaves the dog susceptible to heatstroke.

If your dog can't come with you when you get out of the car, leave him at home.