I see tons of reminders about not leaving dogs, specifically, in hot cars but what about other pets? Cats, guinea pigs, hamsters, etc. can overheat just like dogs. Dogs, in general, are just more commonly taken along for rides in the car and make good travel companions. BUT there are occasions when other pets like cats or exotic pets travel too.
People have to take their pets to the vet, drop them off at pet boarding facilities, and believe it or not many pets other than dogs do accompany their humans for fun outings away from home. So dogs are not the only ones traveling in cars.
Actually, most exotic pets are extremely temperature sensitive and may overheat in a hot car much more quickly than a dog. Yes, I have personally witnessed and helped care for an overheated exotic pet on several occasions. In one particular case, a guinea pig was left in a car for a short amount of time. When said guinea pig arrived at our veterinary clinic he was in extremely poor condition.
In fact, his temperature was so high the thermometer could not read it. The highest temperature our thermometer read was 110 degrees Farenheit. That is the highest I have ever seen any animal's temperature get. It's a very sad story, but poor guinea pig did not make it through.
|Photo via Toshihiro Gamo|
You also need to be careful when allowing your small exotic pets play outside during the summer because they can overheat so quickly. Last year, we shared some tips on keeping small exotic pets cool and hydrated to prevent them from overheating, which you can read here.
Just remember that ANY animal, whether it be a dog or cat or guinea pig, does not deserve to be left in a scorching hot car. If you can't take them inside with you while you run errands, it is best to just leave them at home or do you errands later.