Tips to keep your pet safe during the dog days of summer

Ontario SPCA and Humane Society urges caution to protect pets in hot weather

As temperatures soar, the Ontario SPCA and Humane Society is urging pet owners to take extra precautions to keep their furry friends cool and safe.

Don’t – Leave your pet alone in a vehicle, even in the shade with the windows slightly down. 

The issue of owners leaving their pets in their vehicles during the hot summer months, putting animals’ safety at risk, is an ongoing problem across Ontario. Parked cars can quickly reach deadly temperatures, even on relatively mild days with the car parked in the shade and the windows slightly open.

“If you can’t take your pet with you when you leave your car, leave them at home where they are safe,” says Jennifer Bluhm, Acting Chief of Animal Protection, Ontario SPCA and Humane Society.

Do – Make sure your pet always has access to fresh water and a cool, sheltered place out of direct sunlight to avoid heat stroke.

Pets should only be left outdoors for short periods, should have sufficient water and a cool, sheltered place out of direct sun.

Don’t – Leave pets outside for too long. If possible, avoid going outside when temperatures are at their highest.

“Use caution when exercising or playing with your pet during heat waves to prevent heat exhaustion,” says Bluhm. “We recommend going for walks in the early morning or evening when it’s cooler.”

Do – Know whether your pet is more susceptible to heat exposure.

Certain types of dogs, such as Northern breeds or short-muzzled dogs, can have a more difficult time in the heat. Pets that are older, overweight, taking certain medications or with certain medical conditions, are also more susceptible to heat exposure.

Take Action – Spread the word on social media about hot weather pet safety using the #NoHotPets

If you observe an animal suffering in the heat, call 1-833-9ANIMAL (1-833-926-4625).

For more tips to keep pets cool, visit


Media Relations

Ontario SPCA and Humane Society

905-898-7122 x 375


The Ontario SPCA and Humane Society

The Ontario SPCA and Humane Society is a registered charity, established in 1873. The Society and its network of animal welfare communities facilitate and provide for province-wide leadership on matters relating to the prevention of cruelty to animals and the promotion of animal well-being. Offering a variety of mission-based programs, including community-based sheltering, animal wellness services, provincial animal transfers, shelter health & wellness, high-volume spay/neuter services, animal rescue, animal advocacy, Indigenous partnership programs and humane education, the Ontario SPCA is Ontario’s animal welfare charity.