LETTER: Pets need extra care during hot weather

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Hot weather is upon us and with the rise in temperatures comes much suffering for animals.

Dogs are descendents of the wolf, an animal that spends its days in the cool forests or in rock shelters. Just as the wolf seeks shelter from the sun, dogs need shade. Rather than providing shade, a dog house sitting in the sun quickly becomes an oven. Deprived of shade a dog can die a slow and painful death from heat stroke. Dog houses need to be placed under a large tree or a side porch needs to be built on the house to provide shade. 

Dogs need plenty of fresh, clean water every day. Water will stay cooler and cleaner if it is in a bucket, rather than a shallow bowl. Keeping a small scrub brush by the water spigot is a good reminder to keep the bucket clean. It also is essential that cats have fresh water available at all times. The care of a pet ought not to be put entirely in the hands of a child. Adult supervision is needed.

Many supposedly loving pet owners make the grave error of leaving pets in the car while they run errands during the warm months. Animals and babies are found dead every year locked in cars with the windows cracked. Even temperatures as low as 60 degrees can quickly soar to 120 degrees inside a car, resulting in agony and death. Please leave your animals at home and save the car rides for cooler months.

Spend some quality time each day with your animals. Pet them, talk to them, take them for a walk. Every creature deserves to be treated with kindness and respect. Having an animals requires time and money. If you are unwilling or unable to give either, please don’t get an animal.

Each hour of each day, 12,500 dogs and cats are killed by animal control agencies in this country. You can help to stop this terrible suffering by having your male and female animals neutered or spayed.

lucia beeler