How to keep your pets safe as DC-area temperatures rise

The Humane Rescue Alliance gives tips on how to keep pets safe in scorching temperatures. (Courtesy Humane Rescue Alliance)

As the temperatures rise, the chance of your pets getting a heat stroke do too.

The Humane Rescue Alliance in D.C. has details on what pet owners should avoid as the region experiences a heat wave.

Dan D’Eramo, director of field services for the Humane Rescue Alliance, urged pet owners to skip that walk outside and instead keep pets in the air conditioning.

“Aside from just like a minute or two to just go to the bathroom, and, you know, do their thing, and then come right back inside,” D’Eramo told WTOP.

He said that some breeds of dogs are especially sensitive to the heat, which makes it even more dangerous for them to be outside.

“There are a lot of breeds like boxers and bulldogs that have that scrunched up face that do far worse in the heat than any other dog,” D’Eramo said. “They’re just designed in a way that doesn’t allow them to breathe very well.”

And remember that the sidewalk can burn a dog’s paws pretty quickly when it’s hot.

“Asphalt can be 50, 60, 70, 80 degrees hotter than it is outside,” D’Eramo said. “We see animals come in with the pads of their feet burned, because they were on the concrete too long or on the asphalt too long.”

D’Eramo also urged pet owners to be vigilant while traveling with pets, because it doesn’t take too long for the inside of a car to turn deadly.

“You get stuck in the store for 15 minutes, instead of the two that you thought you were going to be there,” D’Eramo said. “That’s all it takes for something more tragic to happen.”

Valerie Bonk

Valerie Bonk started working at WTOP in 2016 and has lived in Howard County, Maryland, her entire life. She's thrilled to be a reporter for WTOP telling stories on air. She works as both a television and radio reporter in the Maryland and D.C. areas. 

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