In The Good Old Summertime – unless you’re a dog in a hot car!




Part I.


Warm weather brings fun in the sun, mosquitoes, and dogs left in cars.   Every year, almost without fail, the weather warms up and owners take their pet with them in the car.   The pet “loves to ride along” so they say.    This might be OK if the car didn’t turn into an oven. 


Don’t believe it?   Then I challenge anyone to sit in their car with the windows slightly open in a winter coat, hat and boots.     How long before you shed those extra clothes or turn on the AC?     My prediction, it wouldn't take very long at all.     We humans suffer from the “I didn’t think” or “I didn’t know” syndrome.  


 One big difference, our pets can’t shed those extra clothes or turn on the AC.   


 On a hot summer day, the inside of a car heats up very quickly.   On an 85º F. day the temp. in the car – with the windows slightly open – will reach 102º F. in 10 minutes even in the shade.   In 20 minutes, it will go up to 120º F.    A pet can stand this temp. for a short time only.   A Very Few Minutes is all it takes for your pet to suffer irreversible brain damage or even death.  A Very Few Minutes is all it takes. 


 175 businesses in Rice County received Hot Weather Procedure Sheets.   This Procedure Sheet provides employees with steps to take when a patron or individual reports a pet left in a hot car.   In addition, law enforcement, police, sheriff, fire and dispatch received this Hot Weather Procedure Sheet.  The law does allow for the removal of the animal by law enforcement, humane agent, animal control or member of fire and/or rescue department.



Unfortunately, not all businesses received notices.  If you would like a copy of the Procedure Sheet to give to stores you patronize, contact me at and I will forward one to you.  It doesn’t matter what Minnesota County you live in.   The Minnesota law allowing the removal of the animal is a State law so it governs all.    



If you see a pet in a hot car, do not take matters into your own hands.    The goal is to help an animal not create an incident where someone is threatened or injured.  Call law enforcement.








Be responsible.   Have your pets spayed or neutered.

"Shirley Taggart is an animal advocate.    She is committed to helping animals and the people who care about them."

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