NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — As this summer heat persists, the conditions can be dangerous and deadly for pets.
Black pavement can burn your dog's paws in the summer. If the temperature outside is 87, black pavement can be hotter than 140 degrees if it's in direct sunlight. According to Metro Animal Care and Control Officer Ashley Harrington, puppies are more likely to have their paws burned by hot pavement because their skin is fragile.
"Essentially puppies are babies, and their skin is more sensitive than an adult dog, much like a human baby," Harrington said.
In addition to your pup's paws, it's illegal to leave your dog outside on a tether in Davidson County when the heat index is 95 or higher. If you don't abide by the ordinance, you might be cited for animal cruelty. On Friday animal control officers were called out to several homes to investigate pets left out in the heat.
If your dog appears to be over-heating, and you're not close to a veterinarian, there's a few things you can do to help.
"If you’re able to, cool it off, put some cold water, not freezing cold but cool to the touch on its belly and its groin area, that will cool the dog down, get its paw pads wet, try to not give it too much water, you don’t want to send it into shock. If it will drink little sips of water that’s okay, but don’t immerse the dog into like a bath of water or lake, that could send it into shock," Harrington said.
Lastly, don't leave your dog in a vehicle without air conditioning. In minutes, the temperatures can be deadly.
"Our best recommendation is if you’re hot, they’re hot, so please bring them inside, you enjoy the air conditioner, so your pets do too," Harrington said.