NEWMARKET, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - July 21, 2011) - The Ontario SPCA continues to respond to reports of pets being left in hot cars as the heat wave continues in the GTA. On average the Ontario SPCA receives approximately five calls a week in the GTA reporting concerns for a dog in a car; over the last three days the Ontario SPCA has received 35 calls. Communities across southern Ontario are reporting a marked increase in calls.

The Ontario SPCA would like to remind pet owners that high temperatures can be a serious danger to pets, and that it is an owner's responsibility to ensure that their pet is not left in situations that can easily cause severe distress or even death.

Dogs have a limited ability to sweat; even a short time in a hot environment can be life-threatening. A dog's normal body temperature is about 39°C and a temperature of 41°C can be withstood only for a very short time before irreparable brain damage or even death can occur.

"Parked cars can quickly reach deadly temperatures, even in the shade with the windows slightly open." Says Steve Toy, Sr. Inspector Ontario SPCA. "It is not a wise decision to leave your pet in your car; please leave your pet at home where it is safe and cool."

If heat stroke is suspected (excessive panting and drooling, listlessness or unconsciousness) prompt veterinary medical attention is vital. In the meantime, wet the fur immediately with lukewarm to cool water, not cold water. Bring the pet into the shade and offer drinking water.

If you observe an animal suffering in the heat, contact the Ontario SPCA 1-888-668-7722 or the police.

The Ontario Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Ontario SPCA): Protecting animals since 1873, the Ontario SPCA is a registered charity comprised of over 50 Communities relying primarily on donations to fund animal protection, care and rehabilitation; advocacy; and humane education. The Ontario SPCA Act mandates the Society to enforce animal cruelty laws and provides Society investigators with police powers to do so – making the Ontario SPCA unique among animal welfare organizations in the province. The Ontario SPCA is an affiliated with the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Adopt – Volunteer – Donate! Charitable Business Number 88969 1044 RR0002

Contact Information:

Provincial Media Contact:
Ontario SPCA
Alison Cross
Manager, Communications