As temperatures increase, Metro Animal Control Officers have been staying busy rescuing pets from the heat.
Over the last few days, Animal Control officers have responded to more than 125 calls a day, which was higher than average. Many of the calls have been related to the heat.
A Metro ordinance has stated when the heat index reaches 95 degrees or higher, people have been restricted from tethering their dogs outside and could face a citation and possible fines. Dogs have been allowed to be outside, but can’t be tethered and must have sufficient shelter and water.
“If an animal is tied outside the risk is getting tangled and not getting to water or shelter,” said Seth Montgomery, a Metro Animal Control Officer. “That is how they get heat exhaustion.”
On Friday, Montgomery was called to a home on Antioch Pike where a pit bull was tethered outside in the sun. He spoke to the owner and issued a citation.
“Heat exhaustion can happen quickly and cause long term health damage,” said Montgomery. “They need to bring their dog in, that is the biggest thing. If it is hot outside, bring your dog in.”
Montgomery said dogs have elevated body temperatures compared to humans and can overheat quickly. Owners need to look out for symptoms including increased panting, difficulty breathing, and disorientation.
“You want to get them out of the direct sun,” said Montgomery. “Get a fan on them. Cool them down with water.”
Metro Animal Control officers patrol the area and answer reports that have been called into the facility. If you see an animal tethered outside and without shelter, call 615-862-7928.