Keeping Shelter Animals Cool

COOPER TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- Because of this intense heat, it's important to take extra precautions for our four-legged friends. Animal shelters are especially busy this week making sure the pets stay cool. There are dozens of animals at the Pennsylvania SPCA Central PA Center near Danville, all of which require constant care.

"It's a full-time job taking care of them on a regular day, but in the heat, it becomes even more," Carlee Fiddes said.

What separates this SPCA from many others, there are farm animals here. The horses and cows stay outside.

"They get acclimated to summertime heat, but this is intense heat. This is not your normal," Fiddes said.

It sounds simple, but shelter director Carlee Fiddes says the single most important things are making sure the outdoor animals have access to shade and water.

"We aren't just checking to make sure they have enough water, we're checking the temperature of the water. In the heat of the summer, we have 100-degree sun rays on that water all day long," Fiddes said.

The horses and cows all have these salt blocks in their enclosures.

"Encourages them to consume more water, which allows them to then be able to handle the increased water demand through the heat of the day," Fiddes said.

One thing the SPCA recommends is before you take your pet for a walk, check the temperature of the pavement. If it's too hot for you, it's too hot for them.

"Our rules here at the shelter are short walks during the heat of the day. Ideally walking them first thing in the morning or last thing at night. Making sure they have adequate water. If you're going on a walk, take water with you," Fiddes said.