Extreme Heat: Pets at Risk

posted 7/20/2016

Temperatures this week are expected to near 100 degrees with heat indexes reaching triple digits. Take extra precautions to keep animals safe:

  • All animals should be given constant access to fresh, cool water. If there are feral cats or wildlife in your neighborhood, set out a bowl of fresh, cool water for them as well.
  • Cats, dogs and other pets should be kept indoors in air conditioning or with fans blowing.
  • Limit your dog’s outside time to bathroom breaks only.
  • Do not take your pets on errands or leave them in a vehicle.
  • Read more tips here.

If you do not have a place to stay cool, call 2-1-1 for a list of cooling centers open in Des Moines and Polk County. If you have pets, 2-1-1 operators can connect you with the Animal Rescue League of Iowa (ARL) to make arrangements for your pets to be cared for as well.

The ARL reminds people to act immediately if they see a distressed animal outside or in an unattended car. In the city of Des Moines, residents can call ARL Animal Care & Control at (515) 283-4811. Residents outside of Des Moines can call their local law enforcement's non-emergency phone number.