Leaving a pet unattended in a hot vehicle can lead to fatal results. This is the message the Winnipeg Humane Society (WHS) shares every year, but continues to receive hundreds of emergency calls. A new car window decal is now available to bring more awareness to the dangers that can occur when leaving a pet inside a vehicle.
The decal contains the message ‘A Hot Car Can Kill’ along with the WHS emergency phone number to call when seeing a dog inside a hot vehicle: 204-982-2020.
In 2016 the WHS received 185 animals locked in vehicles complaints. There were 226 calls in 2015 and 190 in 2014.
“A dog quickly overheats when left inside a vehicle which leads to heat stroke, brain damage and even death,” says Heather Neil, WHS Manager of Investigations and Emergency Response. “Pets should never be left inside a vehicle. We need to work together as a community to spread this message and make sure it’s heard.”
The printing of the decals is made possible through a partnership agreement with River City Ford. All the vehicles on its lot will display the decals this summer. In addition to supporting the message, River City Ford will also donate $250 to the WHS for every vehicle sold in July. The funds will be used to support the emergency response team and provide medical, behavioural, and general care to over 8,000 animals the WHS receives each year.
“There is no safe temperature to leave a dog inside a vehicle, even if its parked in the shade with the windows partially down,” says Ryan Monczunski, River City Ford General Manager. “River City Ford is proud to assist the Winnipeg Humane Society and share this critical message.”
To help in a greater way, the WHS is partnering with CAA Manitoba. In 2016, CAA Manitoba received 157 calls from the public about pets left inside vehicles. This is a free service that CAA has and always will provide in Manitoba, CAA member or not. While most of the calls were from people who have mistakenly locked their own pet inside a vehicle, CAA Manitoba also receives calls of concern about other people’s pets in vehicles. CAA Manitoba call counsellors will work with WHS emergency responders to ensure the animal receives the help it needs.
Decals are available for a donation at the Winnipeg Humane Society, all CAA Manitoba locations and River City Ford.
When seeing a dog inside a vehicle the first thing to do is call the WHS Emergency line at 204-982-2020. The emergency line is answered from 8 a.m. – 11 p.m.