Indy has the right idea. Every city should have these ordinances and fines in place to make sure pet owners pay attention and don't take unnecessary risks. Why are these laws needed? Just a few days ago we saw another headline about a couple that left their dog in the car with the air conditioning on and their dog still died. So that's why all these laws and ordinances are needed as we need to encourage pet owners to leave their dogs at home and they should always have access to shade!
We learned from Fox59 News that pet owners are held accountable during extreme heat in Indianapolis. According to an Indianapolis city ordinance, it is required by law to provide your dog with shelter when the temperature reaches 80 degrees Fahrenheit, and you must bring your dog inside when it's warmer than 90 degrees Fahrenheit.
In Indy, your dog must be brought inside a temperature-controlled building, such as your house when:
- The temperature outside is 20°F & below
- The temperature outside is 90°F & above
- There's a heat advisory
- There's a wind chill warning
- A tornado warning has been issued
Just don't take the chance and leave your dogs in the house. This Indy law is absolutely a no-brainer and I wish all cities would follow Indy's footsteps.
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Dog dehydration can happen quickly! Here are signs from Trupanion you should have on your radar.
- Excessive panting
- Sunken eyes
- Dry mouth
- Skin loses elasticity
- Delayed capillary refill time (veterinarians will check the gums to check on a dog's oxygen level)
Heatstroke during a heatwave is common for humans so clearly our canine friends can also dehydrate! Dangerous heat makes traveling with our dogs complicated so it's just better to leave them at home. Crank the air and get the fans out.
It's really surprising that only 12 states have enacted laws allowing "any person" to rescue a distressed animal. Indiana is the first and only state to require the person who forcibly enters a vehicle to rescue an animal to pay half the damages. Only certain states allow you to rescue a dog from a hot car where there is limited civil or criminal liability of the person for damages resulting from the forcible entry of the vehicle.
It's also basically shocking to think people are still leaving their animals (and children) in hot cars every summer. The 12 states with laws in place are Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Kansas, Massachusetts, Ohio, Oregon, Tennessee, Vermont, and Wisconsin. I'm embarrassed to say that the state of Washington, where I live, isn't on this list!
What would you do if this happened to your dog? Are you prepared for an emergency if your dog is dehydrated? Please leave us a comment below.