For Immediate Release:
May 4, 2018
Brooke Rossi 202-483-7382
Washington, D.C. – Following recent reports that a 1 1/2-year-old girl was rescued after being left in a hot car in Suitland, PETA is issuing an urgent warning: Vulnerable individuals are at risk and should never be left in a vehicle on a hot day. Animals, children, and elderly people are the most susceptible to the heat, and one mistake can cost someone’s life.
Already this year, there have been at least five hot weather–related animal deaths—and these are just the ones that have been reported. Most aren’t. PETA suggests doing the following in order to safeguard humans and animals:
- Never leave anyone inside a hot vehicle. On a 78-degree day, the temperature inside a parked car can soar to between 100 and 120 degrees in about 10 to 15 minutes. Dogs, who don’t sweat and can cool themselves only by panting, can rapidly succumb to heatstroke, even if a vehicle is parked in the shade with the windows slightly open.
- If you see an animal left alone inside a car, call local humane authorities or 911 immediately and remain on the scene until the situation has been resolved. If authorities are unresponsive or too slow and the animal’s life appears to be in imminent danger, find a witness who will back up your assessment before carefully removing the animal from the car and carrying him or her into the shade. Wrap a cool, wet towel around the animal’s head and neck without covering the eyes, nose, or mouth, and wring out, resoak, and reapply it every few minutes. Pour lukewarm water over the animal’s body, and wipe excess water away, especially from the abdomen and between the hind legs. When authorities arrive, ensure that the animal is taken to a veterinarian for further care.
Anyone who leaves a child or an animal to bake to death in a vehicle could face felony charges.