Protecting your pets in summer heat

WICHITA FALLS, Tx (RNN Texoma) - With temperatures climbing into the triple digits, local animal advocates want people to remember their pets outside.

"Anything in the heat is not good for somebody wearing a fur coat," said Leslie Harrelson, executive director of P.E.T.S Low-Cost Spay and Neuter.

"We need to have access to shade and water and our pets do, too," said Katrena Mitchell with City of Wichita Falls Animal Services.

Animal Control officers stay busy in the summer.

During extreme temperatures, Animal Services get calls daily about dogs in distress.

"Thursday, we were out on a call where a dog was chained out in the backyard, which is illegal," said Mitchell.  "It had no water, no shade, no shelter anything like that."

By law, Animal Control officers are limited to what they can do to help an animal that is suffering.

"Our officers can not just walk into a backyard and take an animal," said Mitchell.  "We can provide it some comfort, and we can possibly get a warrant and remove the animal."

To prevent a heat stroke, your pets need fresh water, shelter, and proper shade.

"Shade from a dog house does not count," said Mitchell.  "That is backed up by city ordinance."

If it gets too hot, advocates said the best thing to do is bring your pet inside.

"We ask you to do that when it is really cold outside, so we ask you to do the same in the summer," said Harrelson.  "If it is really hot and you yourself are suffering, so is your pet," said Harrelson.

The best thing you can do if you see an animal that does not have proper shade, water, or shelter, you are encouraged to call City of Wichita Falls Animal Services at 761-7824.

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