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Dogs in Cars: How Hot is Too Hot?

Dogs in Cars: How Hot is Too Hot?


word image 907 1 dogs in cars

In parts of the United States, temperatures are already soaring.

But how hot is too hot for your dog in your car?

Surprisingly, it might be lower than you think!

When Spring Temps Rise

Here in the Phoenix area, temperatures have already soared into the 80’s. While that is a welcomed change for humans, did you know that it might already be too warm for some dogs to be riding in your car?

word image 907 2 dogs in cars

It’s true; even mild temperatures can pose a threat to our beloved pets!

So, before you invite your K9 along in the car, take a moment to understand how even mild temperatures can affect your dog’s overall well-being and safety!

Not that warm where you live? Get prepared by reading the rest of this blog below.

Mild Temps Do Not Mean Cool for Your Dog

The AKC warns that “the inside of a vehicle parked in 70-degree weather can reach 100 degrees in just 20 minutes.” On even hotter days, temperatures inside a car can reach an unfathomable 140 degrees F in less than 60 minutes! If it is humid outside, the heat index inside your car is even worse.

word image 907 3 dogs in cars


Warning: when a dog’s temperature reaches 106 degrees F, both his cells and organs begin to break down with potentially irreversible damage. The normal temperature range for your dog is between 100 -102 degrees F., and should never go over 104 degrees F.

Caution: Parking in the shade or cracking a window does nothing to stop the temperatures from climbing in a parked car. So, leave Fido home in a cool environment to protect him from deadly heatstroke and other irreversible heat-related injuries like brain damage.

Never put your dog in the open bed of pickup!

One, the obvious safety risks; and

Two, for the lack of protection from the hot sun and scorching metal!

K9 Breeds Susceptible to Heat

Do you know that certain dog breeds are at higher risk for overheating in a parked car? It’s a fact you need to know!

Dogs that have broad and short skulls, shorter noses and flatter faces are at greater risk when temperatures rise. These breeds are called “brachycephalic breeds” and according to a study done in 2017 by the AKC, ten brachycephalic breeds are included in the Top 31 most popular breeds!

Since already challenged with breathing issues, it is also harder for these breeds to cool themselves down with effective panting.

These breeds include:

  • Affenpinscher
  • word image 907 4 dogs in cars Boston Terriers
  • Boxers
  • Brussels Griffon
  • Bull Mastiffs
  • Bulldogs, French & English Bulldogs
  • Cavalier King Charles Spaniels
  • Dogue de Bordeaux
  • Japanese Chin
  • Lhasa Apso
  • Pekingese
  • Pugs
  • Shih Tzus

Mixed breed dogs can also inherit this trait (the inability to breathe normally) from their ancestors.

In addition, obese dogs among brachycephalic breeds are at an even greater risk for breathing difficulties.

word image 907 5 dogs in cars

Leave THESE Dogs Home!

In addition, dogs with the following conditions should also be left at home for their ultimate safety in warmer weather.

  • Puppies less than 6 months old.
  • Dogs with heart or lung disease.
  • Overweight or obese dogs.
  • Elderly, senior dogs.
  • Sick dogs.

Unsure whether your dog should join you in the car?

Always error on the side of caution.

It’s just not worth the potential health risk to your precious dog!

word image 907 6 dogs in carsPlanning to Travel?

Make your reservation now for our popular

Family Style Boarding before it’s too late!

Plenty of play time and snuggles, all while

practicing good K9 manners!

A large, fenced yard with grass and a

pool for the ultimate dog vacation!

Receive regular updates with pictures and videos!

Call 480-382-0144 or send us an email to schedule.

Serving Chandler, Gilbert, Tempe and East Valley areas of Arizona.

Additional Reading:

AKC: Can I Leave My Dog in the Car If I Crack a Window?


HSVMA: The Cost of Cuteness: Health and Welfare Issues Associated with Brachycephalic Dog Breeds

The Humane Society: Keep Pets Safe in the Heat Dogs in Hot Weather: How to Protect Your Dog from the Summer Heat?

Image Credits (Shown in Order of Appearance):

Christian LeBlance from Pixabay

Michal Jarmoluk from Pixabay

Courtesy: PetPlan

Jan Steiner from Pixabay

Free-Photos from Pixabay

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