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Heat Concerns Even on Cooler Days

CEDAR RAPIDS, IA (CBS2/FOX28)- Officers say they receive more calls about pets being left in the car than kids, but that doesn't mean it's still right to leave either in a hot car.

"It's sickening," Tracey Powell said.

Powell said she can't imagine leaving her pets in a car.

"Nobody has any right to leave a person, baby, dog or anything during a time like today."

In fact, she recently found some kittens trapped inside a van down the street from her house.

She said that shouldn't happen at grocery stores or outside someone's home.

"They go into Walmart, then be in there for 45 minutes to an hour," Powell said.

The Cedar Rapids Police Department said any length of time can be extremely dangerous for kids and pets.

"Our best advice is to never leave a pet or child in a vehicle," Cedar Rapids Public Safety Communications Coordinator Greg Buelow said.

Police said they get more reports of dogs left in cars intentionally but when they do get a call about a kid in the car: "It's a change in the routine."

Buelow said that changing who takes the kid to daycare for example, can add to forgetting a kid may still be in their carseat.

He said police also get called by frantic parents saying their child locked themselves in the car on accident.

But this new routine could end up with a parent being charged with child endangerment.

"You have to make sure that you don't put them at risk," Buelow said.

"It's just not fair for the dogs," Cedar Rapids Animal Care and Control Program Manager Diane Webber said.

Webber said a dog and child both can't tolerate the heat.

"Pets unfortunately have that extra coat of hair on them and sweat through their paw pads," Webber said.

"If you have pets don't leave them for any length of time," Powell said.

Buelow suggests that before you leave for the store, put a cell phone or purse in the backseat next to your pet or child so you can double check that they aren't left in the car.

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