RSPCA's plea to keep pets cool to avoid heat stress

Posted: 12pm 23 Dec 2021

Pet owners are being reminded to be extra vigilant about their pet’s welfare over the summer months, after the RSPCA were swamped with calls from the community reporting animals suffering from heat stress.

RSPCA Queensland spokeswoman Emma Lagoon says the organisation is deeply concerned about the high number of animals being left in hot cars.

“Since the beginning of November our inspectors have received 116 calls reporting heat stress, and so far this year we’ve also had 105 calls about animals being left in hot cars,” Emma says.

“Cars can quickly turn into ovens, so don’t leave your pet behind when you duck into the shops.

“In a matter of minutes your pet can suffer heatstroke and die if left in a car.”

The RSPCA also says it’s important that pets have access to ample shade and water as the temperature rises.

“It’s a timely reminder for dog owners to never leave your pet tethered. The sun moves during the day, if your dog can’t access shade or water they will perish,” Emma says.

“Too often our Inspectors have been called out to rescue dogs in distress only to find it’s too late.”

Last December an RSPCA inspector was called out to a critical job where a dog was suffering from heat exhaustion after being tethered to a clothesline.

No one was home and no water or shelter was provided for the dog.

Despite rescuing the dog and rushing him to the vet, it was too late.

“We do not want to see a repeat of these situations this Summer, or any time of year.”

Signs your pet is suffering from heat stress 

  • Relentless panting (increases as heatstroke progresses)
  • Drooling, salivating.
  • Agitation, restlessness.
  • Very red or pale gums.
  • Bright red tongue.
  • Increased heart rate.
  • Breathing distress.
  • Vomiting, diarrhoea (possibly with blood)

Top tips to help your pet cool down this summer

  • Provide extra bowls of water in case one is accidentally knocked over.
  • Give outdoor dogs takeaway containers filled with beef or chicken stock which has been frozen overnight.
  • Freeze half a bowl of water overnight and add half a bowl of cool water before giving it to your pet.
  • Provide extra shade areas in your backyard using shade cloths and shade umbrellas.
  • Let your pet play in paddling pools filled with water.
  • Never leave your dog in the car, even with the windows down. They could die in as little as six minutes, as temperatures in a vehicle can rise to dangerous levels, even on mild days. Leaving the windows open, parking in the shade and tinting do not help to reduce the inside temperature significantly.
  • Always walk your dog in the early morning or late evening when it’s cooler.
  • Ensure your pet always has easy access to shade and water throughout the day.
  • Allow your outdoor animals to come inside the house to share the air conditioning or electric fan.

Contact the RSPCA

If you see an animal in distress, contact the RSPCA’s 24/7 Animal Emergency Hotline 1300 ANIMAL.



Shopping centres sign up to end period poverty

One in five Australian women struggle to afford period products and a new campaign is seeking your help. Find out how to get involved...…

COVID-19 UPDATE: August 7

There have been 13 new cases of COVID-19 in the past 24 hours, but all are linked and it is not believed they were active in the community. It’s encouraging news as we wait to see if lockdown will be lifted tomorrow.…

More you might like:


Local News   •   14-8-2022  •   Jodie Powell

Police round-up: thieves steal jewellery, passports

It pays to lock your doors - even if you're at home - as one unfortunate household discovered when thieves took advantage of their inattention. Find out what else has been keeping Moreton Bay Police busy...…

Local News   •   14-8-2022  •   Nick Crockford

Gold for duo at European Games

Tim Gould and Mitchell James were in golden form at the Virtus European Summer Games in Poland, with both standing on top of the medal podium.…

Local News   •   14-8-2022  •   Jodie Powell

Moreton mums making waves

Authors, health professionals and photographers are among the local women who are finalists in the 2022 AusMumpreneur Awards...…

Local News   •   13-8-2022  •   Nick Crockford

Record fleet set sail at WinterBash

The seventh annual WinterBash off the beach regatta at Woody Point attracted its largest ever fleet.…

Local News   •   13-8-2022  •   Ashleigh Howarth

Kick your Friday nights into gear with new car show starting at Kallangur

Some of the region’s flashiest cars and bikes will go on display for revheads to admire at a new monthly car show starting up next month. It will feature a wide range of vehicles from classic cars to Hot Rods and American Muscle.…

Local News   •   12-8-2022  •   Nick Crockford

Redcliffe to host Australia-first conference

Redcliffe will host the first Senior Active Doctors Conference this weekend for experts to discuss how senior doctors may continue to help their communities.…