I am fairly new to Sonoma and love it, but I am concerned how many dogs are left in cars in parking lots here. It was hard to watch when the weather was not as hot, but now it is very dangerous. Just two days ago in Napa a dog was rescued from a car that was 136 degrees inside! There is never an excuse for that. I think people just have no idea how hot cars get, even with windows open, in a very short time. I hope to find the right way to get more information out, possibly through signs at stores, or even in parking lots, to make sure people understand the risk. Although the worst part is the suffering the dog goes through, it is also illegal and owners can incur fines and even jail time for repeat offenses.
Please never leave your dog in a car in warm weather and please call the Police if you ever see any dog in a car in danger. I understand the police in Sonoma are very responsive and receptive to helping in these cases.
This is a quote from my veterinarian, Dr. Melissa Hart from Arroyo Veterinary Hospital: “Leaving a dog in a car on a warm day or even a moderately warm day is a serious issue and within just minutes can become life threatening. The temperature within the car quickly rises and will greatly exceed outside temperatures. Dogs are especially prone to overheating since they do not have sweat glands. If their body temperature approaches 107 degrees for even a short period of time they can go into multiple organ failure or even death”
This link is the CA legislation related to this which includes how citizens can rescue dogs if Police or Animal Control are not close enough.
Terri Alba, Sonoma