Thoughts About Leaving Dog in Car?

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Marlowe, RN,- CGC

Seize life by- the big stick!
Barked: Tue Jan 17, '12 1:29pm PST 
I had a possible solution for a problem pop into my head this week, and I'm just looking for thoughts and opinions on the following situation:

Back in July, my husband and I bought a house that cut his commute to work from an hour to 15 minutes, but consequently bumped my commute to college from 20 minutes to an hour. This means that instead of me driving back home in the middle of the day to spend time with Marlowe, last semester he either went to daycare or was home alone for 6-9 hours (hubby is also taking classes on top of working FT and can't make it home for lunch).

Well, daycare upped their prices, and my class schedule this semester has me at 3 "long days" (9-10 hours with driving time) per week. I don't want to leave Marlowe alone for that long, but I really can't afford to spend $90/week on daycare, either.

My class schedule on these long days is a 50-minute class, an hour break, another 50-minute class, a 2-hour break, and then a 80-minute class. If I took Marlowe with me, I could leave him in the car in a covered parking garage with the windows cracked and then walk him/play with him between classes. The longest he would be left alone would be for the 80-minute class.

Just for background, he travels wonderfully in the car, and anytime we've ever left him in it for any period of time, he's just laid down and gone to sleep. Also, temperatures for this time of year are usually in the 35-65 degree range during the day.

Is this an option that any of you would pick? Why or why not?
Vance CGC

You kids g'off- my lawn!
Barked: Tue Jan 17, '12 2:01pm PST 
It's certainly do-able. My biggest concern would be with the area he's going to be left in, and the fact that you won't be able to see him. I regularly leave Fox in the car while I'm at work (weather permitting), but I park in a private yard where I can look or actually walk out and see her whenever I please.

If it's a nice, low-crime area, I would certainly consider it. Since you won't be able to reach him, I would crate him to keep him a little more hidden from prying eyes. And to keep him from getting to anything that may be pushed through your cracked windows. People think nothing of walking up to a car and sticking hand in at a dog, or trying to give him treats.

Shake it baby!
Barked: Tue Jan 17, '12 4:58pm PST 
I have to be honest, I'm paranoid leaving an animal in the car for any length of time.
We live in a low crime area but we often hear of dogs being stolen or a few cases of poisioning.
Is there a neigbor or friend you could trade favors with or offer a small fee too?

Bruno CGC

Honorary Kelpie
Barked: Tue Jan 17, '12 4:59pm PST 
I'm taking college classes this semester too. I've been bringing Bruno with me every day and taking him for a walk after class. Overheating is certainly not a danger this time of year, and I think having him in the car is more likely to deter break-ins than cause them. (He is territorial of the car.) I drive an old junker with a broken trunk lock so I can't really secure it anyway. (Not like it's a high-crime area either...) The longest I leave him is just under two hours.

I've seen other cars parked around the campus with dogs in them, so it seems to be a common option for dog-owning students. I'd just be careful once the weather starts to warm up.
Sanka- I'll Miss- You

The ground is my- newspaper.
Barked: Tue Jan 17, '12 5:10pm PST 
I'd be paranoid about leaving the windows cracked.laugh out loud

At 35-60 degrees, I don't see a necessity for window cracking. Personally, if I would do it, I'd get something to put up in the back windows, like those suction cup shade things to kind of keep people from accidentally seeing the dog in the car.

Some people will flip out over anything, and given the regularity of it, they'd be more apt to do something. So, drama avoided, especially if your dog just wiggles his butt at them. Who wouldn't feel good about "saving" a dog from a car?

I'd probably flip the back seats down so he'd have a nice dark spot to snooze in too...that is, if your trunk isn't filled with all sorts of tid bits like mine.laugh out loud

Edited by author Tue Jan 17, '12 5:12pm PST

The Boys

The Three- Stooges.
Barked: Tue Jan 17, '12 11:24pm PST 
What will you do when the weather gets warmer? I have to say I'm pleasantly surprised not to see a bunch of people screaming and yelling at you.

Beauty and the- Beast
Barked: Wed Jan 18, '12 7:01am PST 
If there was a parking attendant for the underground parking, and you can park where he/she can see your car. Otherwise, I would be very hesitant leaving my dog in the car unattended. It just takes one person - low crime area or not to hurt your dog or steal him. His body heat will warm the car up faster inside.
The reason you are asking here is because you also feel hesitant. If your gut feels this is not the right thing to do, I would not do it. Is there no way you can put him in an outside run (or get one) while you are gone or leave him in the house. You would not forgive yourself if you went to your car and he was gone. People steal dogs for horrifying reasons. I personally would not take the risk.

Barked: Wed Jan 18, '12 8:05am PST 
I agree with Seela.

College campus would be iffy for me. Lotta smart kind individuals, but also a lot of the opposite...at least where I attended.

Can you advertise locally for a stay at home dog lover that could watch him but wouldn't charge as much as the daycare? Perhaps someone wanting a playmate for their dog?

More Bored- Collies
Barked: Wed Jan 18, '12 8:54am PST 
I thought about doing that when I took my summer classes (on the cool days, and my class was only 8-10am).

Fortunately though, I live only a 20 minute drive from home (although the school is a 5 min drive from the dog park), so it wasn't really a pressing issue for me like it is for you.

IF you can speak with the parking attendant about supervision, I think that'd be your best bet if you do bring him.
It's not just the "nasty" people you'd have to worry about (although they are a concern) but also those with their hearts in the right place - thinking they are doing the right thing by helping your dog out of the car.

As someone else mentioned, it may be a better idea to see if there's someone that can care for the dog during the day - or even find someone close to campus so you can still walk him yourself on the breaks?

I can't hear- you.
Barked: Wed Jan 18, '12 9:20am PST 
Just use common sense and you'll be fine.

I took Ghost to work everyday (our parking complex has a security guard, it was AC'd and underground) when he was a puppy up until he was nearly 6 months so I could walk him at lunch and during my 2 15-minute breaks.
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