Acting on a call from a concerned citizen, the Humane Society of Missouri Animal Cruelty Task Force was called to a property in St. Louis City where two one-year old Shih Tsus, a male and a female, were tethered in a backyard with no access to shade or water. The dogs had been in the direct sun on this 90 degree day for 2 to 3 hours. When the HSMO ACTF investigator arrived on the scene, one dog was in obvious severe distress; the other was panting heavily. St. Louis City Police were called to the scene and determined that the dogs should be removed under “exigent circumstances” which allows animals in immediate danger to be removed from the situation. The female died before arriving at Humane Society Headquarters. The Humane Society veterinarian who examined both dogs determined the deceased dog’s body temperature was in excess of 106 degrees (the maximum the thermometer would read). The surviving dog’s body temperature was 103.3. Normal temperature for this breed is 102.5 degrees.
“No dog should have to suffer this way,” said Debbie Hill, Vice President of Operations for the Humane Society of Missouri. “Pet owners need to understand hot weather can be deadly for pets. And, it is illegal to allow a dog to be injured in this way.”
If you are aware of animals in heat danger, please notify your local Humane Society. Visit the Humane Society of Missouri on the web for tips to keep your pets safe during hot weather.