CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – As temperatures start to rise, experts recommend that pet owners take special precautions to protect their four-legged friends.

To prevent your pet from overheating, the ASPCA advises you to keep your dog hydrated. Pet owners should also make sure that their pets have a shady place to get out of the sun. When it’s too hot to keep them outside all day, only bring them outdoors in the early morning and later in the evening when the heat isn’t as harmful.

Sometimes we like to bring our pets in our cars, but it is important to never leave your animals alone in a parked vehicle. A car can overheat even when the window has been left cracked an inch or two. Even if it’s only 70 degrees outside, the inside of your car can be as much as 20 degrees hotter than that.

Some of the most important things to look out for is if you see your dog excessively panting or drooling. The best thing to do if this happens is to take your dog to a cooler area, gradually wet your pet with cool water and keep them hydrated. Reach out to a veterinary doctor for monitoring and treatment.

Melissa Torres is a reporter who has been a part of the 22News team since 2021. Follow Melissa on X @melissatorrestv and view her bio to see more of her work.