Weather Precautions

Keep Your Pets Safe In Extreme Weather

We all know that the weather in Louisiana is unique compared to other states. We hope these weather tips will help you know what precautions to take with your.


  • Know your breed! Certain breed of dogs can’t be left in the heat for any period of time.
  • If your pet is outside during the day provide protection from the sun and plenty of fresh water. Consider a kiddie pool to help your pet cool off.
  • NEVER, under any circumstances, leave your pet in a parked car! The temperature inside a car can reach 120° in only a few minutes.
  • Exercise your dog in the morning or evening when temperatures are cool.
  • Dogs in truck beds can suffer injury or heatstroke if the truck bed is too hot.
  • Know the warning signs of heatstroke! These include excessive panting, difficulty breathing, increased heart rate, drooling, weakness, seizures, bloody diarrhea, vomit and elevated body temperature.
  • If your pet is suffering from any of the above symptoms, transport them to your veterinarian or an emergency clinic immediately. Affects from heatstroke can be long lasting and deadly. 

Hurricane Season

Don’t wait until a hurricane is in the Gulf of Mexico, prepare in advance! Just like other members of your household, emergency planning for your pets requires supplies and advance preparation. Pets are members of the family and should be included in disaster preparations. Always include your pets in your evacuation plans and prepare for the worst-case scenario. Do not, under any circumstances, leave your pet behind. Visit our disaster preparedness page to learn more about hurricane season.

  • Make sure your pet’s vaccinations are up-to-date and make copies of your records to take with you. All boarding facilities and veterinarian offices require proof of immunization before accepting pets. 
  • Update your pet’s ID tags if needed.Talk to your veterinarian about permanent forms of identification such as microchipping and enrolling your pet in a recovery database. This simple step could be your pet’s round-trip ticket home in the event they get lost. Please note that microchipping is mandatory in Orleans Parish for all pets allowed outside.
  • Compile a list of places you can go if you need to evacuate. Consider staying with family or friends outside of the strike zone. Look into pet-friendly hotels, shelters or boarding facilities. Please note the Louisiana SPCA does not board animals. 


  • Pets should not be kept outdoors during the cold weather.
  • If you can’t bring your pets indoors, their outdoor shelter should provide adequate protection from high winds and lower temperatures.  Provide them with a sheltered enclosure and include blankets and pillows to provide them with additional warmth.
  • Be aware that puppies, kittens and senior pets are particularly sensitive to colder temperatures and should never be left outdoors.
  • Gas furnaces and electric heaters should not be left on in a home unattended.  It can create a fire hazard and animals left alone can’t signal for help.
  • Be cautious if your cat likes being outside. Cats left outdoors often crawl into a warm car engine to get warm. When that engine starts up the cat can be seriously injured or killed by the fan blade or belt. It’s much safer to keep your cat indoors in cold temperatures. Always honk your horn before starting your car to scare any cats from under your vehicle.

In Louisiana, our pets are a part of our culture as much as anything else. And for more than 130 years, the Louisiana SPCA has been an advocate for all our furry friends across the state. Follow our Lead and show the characters of Louisiana you care by supporting the Louisiana SPCA.

The Louisiana SPCA helped more than 3,000 animals find their forever home in 2020.

Did you know that we’re not affiliated with the ASPCA and rely on local donations?