BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — As things continue to heat up in Massachusetts this summer, officials are warning local pet owners not to leave their animals in the car in the heat.
"Unlike humans, animals cannot efficiently cool their bodies. And if you think that cracking the windows will help keep your pet cool – it won’t," officials said in a statement. "Even with the windows cracked, with outside temperatures even below 80 degrees, the inside of a vehicle can heat up to well over 100 degrees in a matter of minutes."
The league warns that heat inside a car can make animals susceptible to heat stroke -- causing symptoms like lethargy, excessive thirst, lack of coordination, vomiting, seizures, or even death.
Police are also reminding the public that it is illegal in Massachusetts to keep an animal confined in a vehicle when extreme heat or cold may threaten it's health.
“The Massachusetts State Police, along with law enforcement agencies across the Commonwealth will be steadfast in enforcing this law to keep animals in Massachusetts safe,” State Police Col. Christopher Mason said.
Pet owners are advised to leave their pets at home when it is hot outside -- and set them up in a cool, humidity and temperature-controlled room, with plenty of water.
They are also asked to limit their pet's outdoor exercise to early morning or evening hours when it is coolest.
Written by Rachel Armany