In Just 20 Minutes

I'm driving home from the lake where Kirby has had so much fun investigating new sights and sounds.  Running here and there he has literally wore himself out so he is now contently sleeping in his car seat behind me.

I remember I need to pick up some laundry detergent as I realize Wal-Mart is just down the street.  Noticing the parking lot is half empty I rationalize it won't take more than ten minutes to run inside.  I'm lucky enough to find a parking spot close to the front door.  It's a warm 85 degrees so I crack all the windows about three inches and tell Kirby I'll be right back. He whimpers a bit but understands he has to stay behind.


I walk quickly into the store to the back where the laundry detergent is. As I'm walking back I notice the cutest little doggie shirt hanging on a nearby aisle.  It's in his signature blue color so I stop to search for his size.  I also notice a really fun toy he would love so I grab it too.

In that ten minutes the temperature in the car has risen to 102 degrees. Kirby's body temperature has also risen causing him to drool and pant heavily as he breathes in the hot air. It’s slowly becoming more difficult for him to breathe as his blood begins to start clotting.

On my way to the register at the front I run into a friend so we chat for just a few minutes then I tell her I have to go cos Kirby is waiting in the car.  I get to the registers which, as usual, have long lines.  I get in the shortest line and wait.

Ten more minutes has allowed the temperature in the car to now reach 120 degrees. Both Kirby's heart rate and respiratory rate have risen as his body desperately pumps blood to his internal organs. He is feeling weak and dizzy. He begins to vomit and has bloody diarrhea. He is now beginning to go into shock.

Finally I reach the register and pay for my purchases.  It took a little longer than I thought but I figure Kirby won't be angry with me when he sees the fun toy I just got him. 

Kirby's internal organs are now starting to cook causing him to have convulsions. In a panic he begins jumping around in his car seat searching for a way out.  Fluid begins to fill his lungs as he begins gasping for air. Finally he slumps into his car seat as his body shuts down. Filled with pain and fear, he drifts into a coma.

I finally return to my car to find his lifeless body. In my hand is the bag containing the laundry detergent I needed, the really cute shirt, and the fun toy.

This was just a dramatization

No, this did not happen but I really want to get the message across because so many good owners have lost their loved dogs just like this. No one ever said to their dog "I'll be right back" and meant I hope you suffer and die. Brain damage or death, both extremely painful, can result in less than 20 minutes.

It's summer which means hot weather.  So many people love to take their dogs with them when running errands or visiting friends.  We take Kirby with us as often as we can but we leave him home when we know it's safer for him.   

Whenever we travel with Kirby and want to do a little shopping, we tag team which means one goes in while the other stays with him.  It makes for a longer trip but we know he is safe. No inanimate object would ever be worth his life. If I'm alone with Kirby then we only go through the drive-thru or stop at stores he is allowed in.  It's that simple.

It's time for Blog The Change

A quarterly blog hop where we write a post about a cause near and dear to our hearts.  I usually write about fostering rescue dogs but with the weather heating up I wanted to talk about dogs and hot cars.  Too often I hear about a dog who has died in a locked car.  The owners are always devastated because they are good owners who dearly love their dogs. I don't think it's murder, I think it's negligence from a lack of common sense.  So we must spread the word so all dog owners realize the dangers a car on a hot day can and will become.