I know we are heading out of the summer but I think this is a very important issue ALL year round. This topic deserves it’s own article and I think this message needs to get out to every dog owner
I’ll explain why…
During the Windsor Show this year (Read my blog here) on the 27th, 28th, 29th and the 30th of June you can imagine it was a rather hot time of the year, as much as it has been the last few months as you may know!
A big problem the whole committee face every year was this issue and I’m proud to be in a committee that was one of the first to have an absolutely zero tolerance with dogs in cars. Doesn’t matter if the clouds are blocking the sun, the boot and windows are open or even if it’s raining, zero tolerance means zero tolerance.
The procedure goes;
1. Identify the dog, breed, number, ventilation, temperature (we have heat scanners), water available and whether the dog is in distress.
2. We then stay by the car, report it to the admin office where the dog will be called out on the tannoy several times and request the owner to come imminently until further action is taken.
3. If no one comes within 10 minutes approx, the show manager, Mr. Gary Grey immediately stops the judging of that particular breed and notifies everyone of the incident. Judging will stop until the dog has been collected.
4. If the owner still hasn’t claimed the dog back then the police will be notified and further action is taken.
Since I’ve been at Windsor (2 years now) we had a stage 3 incident once and that was it. Fortunately no dogs were harmed but you can’t be too careful.
The main priority of any dog show should be the welfare of dogs.
I’d just like to say though that 99.5% of the people who do go to our shows follow those rules and do care for the welfare of the animals. We are a nation of dog lovers after all and I stick by that. It’s just that 0.5% that either don’t care or are not aware of the potential harm it can bring to the animal and that still means that the message has to get out. One fatality is one too much and when you think of the damage it does to a dog internally as it’s being cooked alive in a car. That in itself would make any dog owner realise how excruciating that would be for a dog.
I’ve waited by cars until the owner comes back numerous times during Windsor. Sadly, very few of them genuinely apologise and cooperate. Perhaps it’s the humiliation or knowing that they are in the wrong and find it difficult to admit it, who knows? My job is to ensure no dog dies today.
Even if it’s raining, or below 15C, in my mind, it’s about principle and the rules still apply in any circumstances. Any moment the sun can come out and I’ve seen the temperature rise dramatically, if someone is indoors for hours at a time, unaware of the weather it can be incredibly dangerous. Once the message at ALL championship shows gets out. Even if the policy saves just one dog, its worth it.
Even if the policy saves just one dog, its worth it.
Solving this issue… What do you think?
Here are some of the many posters from various animal groups;
Whether it should be a Kennel Club regulation for all shows and have some sort of disciplinary warning procedure for those who do it more than once, who knows? It’s up to the members and people involved to voice their opinion. Personally, I see no reason why they shouldn’t until someone explains to me otherwise.
Before we do anything, education is critical, getting the message out is vital.
What do you think? Have you had any experiences with dogs in hot cars at a shopping centre? Car park? In the street, perhaps? What do you think needs to be done to tackle this problem? I’ve heard many great suggestions but I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment below!