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Paramedics, animal shelters expecting busy weekend as temperatures get close to triple digits

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Both paramedics and animal shelters are expecting a busy weekend as temperatures get close to triple digits.

The heat can be deadly. A dog was brought in to Milwaukee Area Domestic Animal Control Commission (MADACC) Friday suffering from heat stroke and later died.

“On days like today and tomorrow for sure, we’ll definitely have more come in, and it’s so sad,” Karen Sparapani, MADACC’s executive director said.

She says tragedy like that is preventable.

A rule of thumb Sparapani follows is if you’re uncomfortable outside, your dog will be too.

Animals can’t communicate their distress like people can, but that doesn’t make our danger in extreme heat any less real.

Scott Mickelsen, a critical care paramedic with Bell Ambulance, says the company is staffing heavy this weekend with all the outdoor events going on.

Mickelsen says dizziness, nausea, and heavy sweating are signs of heat exhaustion, and that it may be time to find some shade and grab a water bottle.

The heat cranks up even more inside vehicles.

In a short amount of time sitting in the sun, the inside of a car can reach temperatures upward of 120 degrees.

If a dog or a child is left in a hot car, it’s legal to rescue them.

Certain steps must be followed to eliminate your liability.

First, check if every door is locked. Then try to quickly find the owner. If that doesn’t work, call 911 and tell the dispatcher what you’re about to do. You don’t need to wait for an officer to then break the window.

Sparapani says MADACC has received calls from Summerfest officials in years past that people from out of state have left dogs in their cars.

A Summerfest spokesperson told CBS 58 Friday afternoon that the had been no heat-related medical calls on the grounds since the festival opened Wednesday.

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