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For Immediate Release: 06/16/05

National Call to Save Dogs from Dying in Cars This Summer

Nissan Backs Campaign to Alert Public to The Dangers of Hot Cars

Sacramento, CA — A national call has been issued to save dogs from dying in cars this summer. Every year, dogs die after being locked inside cars while their guardians leave them, often for “just a few minutes.” These animals’ deaths are tragedies that occur with alarming frequency, yet are completely preventable. Throughout the summer we see news reports every few weeks which are but a fraction of the many unreported instances where dogs are left in parked cars to die. A lucky few survive. That is why the Animal Protection Institute has today launched its national initiative “My Dog Is Cool” — just in time for the hot weather season.

“As the summer heats up, it’s important once again that people be made aware of the dangers of leaving their companion animals inside hot cars,” says API Chief Executive Officer Michelle Thew. “Often people mean well by taking their dog along with them while they work, visit, shop, or run errands, but warm weather can literally be a killer, turning a car into a doggie death trap,” she says.

The tragic deaths are entirely preventable. Most people simply don’t realize how quickly closed, unattended cars or trucks can become stifling death traps. When it’s 85 degrees out, the temperature inside a car, even with the windows left slightly open, can soar to 102 degrees in 10 minutes, and can reach 120 in just half an hour.

API is delighted to announce that this national initiative is backed by Nissan, a company with a track record in caring for animals who accompany their drivers. Nissan is working with API to spread the message and encourages other car manufacturers to come on board.

“Nissan is proud to be working with the Animal Protection Institute this summer to help save dogs from dying in cars,” says Lisa Robinson, Manager, Nissan Advanced Planning Department. “Car manufacturers have a key role to play in spreading the word that it’s just not cool to leave a dog in a hot car.”

API will now be encouraging other car companies to include prominent warnings in car manuals and to back the campaign. To help spread the word API has launched a newly designed website www.MyDogisCool.com packed with life saving tips and resources such as windshield flyers, millions of which have been distributed since the start of the campaign. The national outreach effort also includes materials and warning notices for stores and public places.

The Animal Protection Institute (API) is a national, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization established in 1968. Using legislation, litigation, advocacy, and public education, API works to protect animals from cruelty and exploitation.

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