Kids and pets left in cars are in danger of heatstroke

Heatstroke is the leading cause of non-crash, vehicle-related deaths for children. The temperature inside of a car can reach oven-like temperatures in just minutes, often in excess of 140 degrees. On average, every eight days a child dies from heatstroke in a vehicle.

Young children are particularly at risk, as their body can heat up three to five times faster than an adult. Babies and young kids can sometimes sleep so peacefully that we can forget they are even there. It can also be tempting to leave a baby alone in a car while quickly running into the store. The problem is that leaving a child alone in a car can lead to serious injury or death from heatstroke.

Reduce the number of deaths from heatstroke by remembering to ACT.

A: Avoid heatstroke-related injury and death by never leaving your child alone in a car, not even for a minute. And make sure to keep your car locked when you’re not in it so kids don’t get in on their own.

C: Create reminders by putting something in the back of your car next to your child such as a briefcase, a purse or a cellphone that is needed at your final destination. This is especially important if you’re not following your normal routine.

T: Take action. If you see a child alone in a car, call 911. Emergency personnel want you to call. They are trained to respond to these situations. One call could save a life.

That quick errand can turn into a disaster and could be fatal for your child or pet. Never leave children or animals in a parked car, not even if you park in the shade or plan to be gone for only a few minutes. These tragedies are completely preventable.

What can a pet-parent do to prevent heatstroke danger? Be smart and proactive! Make certain an outside pet has access to shade and plenty of fresh, cool water at all times.

Dog owners, when the temperature is high, don’t let your dog linger on hot surfaces such as asphalt and cement. Being so close to the ground can heat their body quickly and is also an invitation to burns on sensitive paw pads. Try to keep walks to a minimum.

Giving your dog a lightweight summer haircut can help prevent overheating, but never shave to the skin, the dog needs its coat to be at least 1 inch to afford protection and avoid getting sunburned.

Restrict exercise when temperatures soar, and do not use muzzles on dogs because it inhibits their ability to pant.

You are encouraged to leave relevant comments but engaging in personal attacks, threats, online bullying or commercial spam will not be allowed. All comments should remain within the bounds of fair play and civility. (You can disagree with others courteously, without being disagreeable.) Feel free to express yourself but keep an open mind toward finding value in what others say. To report abuse or spam, click the X in the upper right corner of the comment box.

Facebook Comment