Friday, September 30, 2022

It’s that time of year again: don’t leave dogs, infants or the elderly in cars

The CDC warns that rolling windows down has a minimal impact on the temperature inside a car.

Animals left in high temperatures can suffer from brain damage, suffocation, a heastroke or even death according to the Humane Society of the United States. (Port City Daily/File photo)
Animals left in high temperatures can suffer from brain damage, suffocation, a heatstroke or even death according to the Humane Society of the United States. (Port City Daily/File photo)

SOUTHEASTERN, N.C.—Though you might want to go everywhere with your best friend, it’s not always a good idea.

Dogs, infants and the elderly are especially susceptible to heat, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). With temperatures on the rise, those most at-risk often aren’t in control.

READ MORE: Can you break a window to save dogs locked in hot cars? It’s complicated

After 10 minutes, a car can heat up to 99 degrees Fahrenheit on an 80-degree day. The CDC warns that rolling windows down has a minimal impact on the temperature inside a car.

Animals left in high temperatures can suffer from brain damage, a heatstroke, suffocation or death according to the Humane Society of the United States. According to People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals(PETA), this can happen in just 15 minutes.

In North Carolina, a law enforcement officer, firefighter, or rescue squad worker can intervene to rescue domestic pets left unattended in cars using “reasonable means.”

If bystanders witness an unattended, at-risk individual or animal, a Wilmington Police Department spokesperson suggests calling 911 before taking action.

In pets, the Humane Society references the following signs that indicate heat stress:

  • heavy panting
  • glazed eyes
  • a rapid pulse
  • unsteadiness
  • a staggering gait
  • vomiting
  • a deep red or purple tongue

As for humans, there are illness-specific symptoms to look out for. The CDC includes a list of symptoms for those suffering from a heat stroke, including:

  • A body temperature of 103° Fahrenheit or higher
  • Hot, red, dry, or damp skin
  • Strong and fast pulse
  • Headache
  • Dizziness
  • Nausea
  • Confusion
  • Loss of consciousness

Heat exhaustion symptoms include the following:

  • Excessive sweating
  • Cold, pale, and clammy skin
  • Fast and weak pulse
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Muscle cramping
  • Fatigue
  • Dizziness
  • A headache
  • Temporary loss of consciousness

READ MORE:

Here are the signs of heat-related illnesses. Can you tell them apart?

Tips for dealing with excessive heat

Watch, warning or advisory? Here’s what they mean when it comes to hot weather


Send tips to Johanna Ferebee at johanna@localvoicemedia.com or follow Johanna on Twitter @j__ferebee

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