With summer temperatures soaring this week, the RSPCA and several other animal welfare organisations have issued advice to pet owners in the Burnham-On-Sea area to ensure their animals are comfortable and happy in the heat.

Twelve organisations have teamed up to spread an important message among dog owners this summer.

Rescue and rehoming charities, veterinary associations, police, and welfare organisations are all working together to ensure owners know the dangers the warm weather can pose to dogs over the summer months.

The RSPCA receives thousands of reports of dogs suffering from heat exposure every year – that equates to one call every hour.

Already this summer the RSPCA have been called to three dogs which tragically died in a hot car.

Although the animal welfare charity records these calls as heat exposure in dogs – which can include dogs outside who are suffering from the heat, or dogs in conservatories or caravans – the majority of these incidents are dogs in hot cars.

In 2015, the RSPCA received 8,779 calls to report incidents of dogs suffering from heat exposure – more than 3,000 more than in 2010. But the number of calls did drop compared to 2014, when the charity saw a high of 10,229 incidents.

The RSPCA and other organisations in the UK have teamed up to launch this year’s ‘Dogs Die in Hot Cars’ campaign to try to bring down this number of calls and raise awareness of the dangers of leaving dogs – and other pets – in hot environments.

Dog’s Trust, The Kennel Club and #TeamOtisUK are the latest groups to join the campaign, which is in its second year, with the support of Battersea Dogs & Cats Home, Blue Cross, British Veterinary Association (BVA), The Mayhew Animal Home, National Animal Welfare Trust, The National Police Chiefs Council (NPCC), PDSA and Wood Green The Animals Charity.

It’s important to remember not to leave any animal in a car or caravan, or in a conservatory or outbuilding, where temperatures can quickly rise, even when it doesn’t feel that warm outside. For example, when it’s 22C outside, within an hour the temperature can reach 47C inside a vehicle, which can result in death.

In an emergency, it is best to dial 999 and report a dog in a hot car to police. The RSPCA may not be able to attend quickly enough and, with no powers of entry, we’d need police assistance at such an incident.

If the animal is displaying any sign of heatstroke – such as panting heavily, drooling excessively, is lethargic or uncoordinated, or collapsed and vomiting – call 999 immediately.

You can call the RSPCA’s 24-hour emergency cruelty line on 0300 1234 999 for advice but, if a dog is in danger, dialling 999 should always be the first step.