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All things doggy!

Posted: Thu Jun 03, 2010 8:56 am
by HollyGee
I need to have a rant about something which I think is a matter of life or death. At my yard, there are about 5 people who own dogs. We have a 'no dogs' policy on the yard so they aren't allowed out around the yard.

The other weekend when it was hot, most people were down and 3 or so of the dog owners were there with their dogs in the car. They came down at about 9, mucked out did chores then hacked out. They didn't leave the yard until about 1pm when it was scorching hot, and their dogs had been sitting in the cars all that time. (I don't think a five-minute walk up the lane on a lead to relieve themselves counts as exercise, and yes, the windows had been open a crack)

I appreciate that people might not have 'help' with their dogs for whatever reasons and feel that they need to cart them all over the countryside, but I think that it is a serious welfare issue. For a start they are cooped up for hours in a confined space which must be like being caged. Secondly, the cars can apparently reach over 100 degrees and cause unimaginable suffering and even death to any dogs left there.

My parents have had dogs all my life and wouldn't dream of leaving them in the car for all that time - whether it's hot or not. I think 3-4 hours at home is ok, at least they can walk around and make themselves comfortable! Any longer and they would arrange for a friend or dog-sitter to come by and spend some time with them. Or jut don't get a dog, especially if you have to leave it in a boiling car.

Re: All things doggy!

Posted: Thu Jun 03, 2010 9:59 am
by dominochase
I think this is a difficult topic. My dog is quite happy to sit in the car and wait for me, but hates being left at home on a regular basis. He actually howls, but is quiet as a mouse in the car. I've actually taken out my rear seats so he has plenty of room to move about, and he is much happier when he can see things going on.

Having said that, I have turned down opportunities to ride when it is hot because at the yard I ride dogs must be on leads at all times, or be left in the car, and I would never put his health at risk. At the moment I ride other people's horses, but when I do get another horse a major consideration in where he or she is kept will be whether the yard is dog friendly. You can't be at the yard all day and the dog be in the car the whole time, it's just not fair.

I do think however, on cooler days, with sunshades in place and the windows wide open, dogs are ok for limited periods of time, as long as they have been walked appropriately, and can stretch their legs after! I'm in the process of buying a Barjo tailgate guard for my car, which will mean I can also leave my boot wide open when it's warmer. You can find out more about them here:

I also have ventlocks which allow you to leave doors and boots open without the car being unlocked. You can buy these from here:

I think dogs should never be left in cars with the windows up, sunshades should be used (sunshades should be the reflective type, not the holey black type - these are also sold at and they should always have access to water.

You are right, in certain situations it is just not right to leave your dog in the car, and definitely not for hours on end in scorching heat.

Re: All things doggy!

Posted: Thu Jun 03, 2010 11:36 am
by Snipper
I have to say, I do agree that dogs shouldn't be left in cars for long periods of time. I do understand that there are occasions when it is unavoidable, but it really should just be for a short while and never on a hot day. It does sound like you have got the balance right though Dominochase, more people should be as thoughtful as you!

Re: All things doggy!

Posted: Thu Jun 03, 2010 11:50 am
by Kaliska
Tricky indeed! My dog comes to work with me every day as we have under-building parking which is always cool, in fact, cooler than my house as we have gigantic windows that retain all the heat. Some of the rooms in my house have been known to hit 35 degrees on a typical summers day! I do also take her to the yard where dogs have to be on a lead, but I leave her in the shade, windows open, boot open (I have a Barjo tailgate guard) and sunshades, as well as a reflective sheet.

I think it depends entirely on the situation, where the dogs can be parked and the owner's discretion. I know a lot of people who wouldn't agree with me taking my dog everywhere I go, but for her it's a better situation.

With regards to dogs being left in a car not on a hot day, well, surely that's better for (using myself as an example), my dog to be in my car for four hours, then walked for an hour, and then in a car for three hours, than be left in a kennel for at least 9-10 hours? Even if someone walked her in the middle of the day, she'd do the same as she does in my car, which is sleep!

It's one of those contentious issues which depends on so many factors that there really is no right or wrong answer.

Re: All things doggy!

Posted: Thu Jun 03, 2010 2:26 pm
by Centaur
Well, the same applies to horses. If you didn't have time for a horse, would you get one? I don't have time for a horse or a god, and though I'd like to have both, I make the sensible decision not to get one. I can't offer an animal the time or attention it needs, so I don't even go there.

I think loads of people have a dog (or a horse!) as a status symbol or because they want a companion. Fair enough, but if you're not going to ride the horse (or can't afford to get someone else to do so) or walk/water the dog (or can't afford a sitter/walker) then put your own needs aside and let the dog go to a home where it will get the care it deserves.

I used to share a house where the landlord (live-in) had a cat, and he never bothered to feed or water it - he only got it because his kids wanted one, and they only visited in the summer. We tenants were forced to step in and feed/water the cat - even buying food and cat litter. We even took it to the vet as it had fleas!

My point is that if you're going to own anything - whether it's a horse, a dog, a cat or a child! - you need to be able to give it the time, attention, care it deserves and this often involves money.

All the horse trials and showjumping comps i go to have big signs up saying 'no dogs in cars' - and I think this should extend to the wider world and not just horse shows. nothing saddens me more than the sound of whimpering dogs from inside a car. Wolves were made to roam, not lie down all day.

Re: All things doggy!

Posted: Thu Jun 03, 2010 3:11 pm
by HollyGee
Centaur, this is exactly what I am trying to say. I agree completely.

My boyfriend and I would love a dog but wouldn't dream of getting one until one of us can stay home/we can afford a sitter/human companion as it's just not fair.

A neighbour of the yard actually made a complaint about the dogs in the cars but nothing's been done about it - they still sit there, day in, day out, caged up.

At least if they are in the house, they can walk around, stand up, lie down, roll, get up on their hind legs to look out of the window etc etc and being trapped in an underground car park all day is even worse - cooped up in the dark as well!!

It actually really upsets me to see this - are there any yards that have a designated doggy area for example? Is anyone at or own a dog-friendly yard? Does it work?

Re: All things doggy!

Posted: Thu Jun 03, 2010 4:43 pm
by rachw888
I'm at a yard where dogs are welcome, off lead (infact I train and practise agility in the unused fields!) I'm actually trying to move at the moment and didn't realise the amount of yards that do not allow dogs.
Perhaps not at busy yards, but I think smaller liveries should allow dogs! On the basis that poo is picked up immediately, and the dog well socialised with horses!
It works well - I just pop him in the car when I ride and use a huge reflective sun screen around the windows. If I know I'm going out on a hack I tend to leave him at home, not being anywhere near the car would worry me - also thinking about thefts there! (high dog theft in area)
Now facing the fact that I might not be able to take him to the next yard I go to I have definitely made the decision to leave him at home through the summer. It is NEVER going to be worth the risk. During the colder months I probably would leave him in the car and fold the back seats down for more space.
Still think some more livery yards should consider the dog idea though ;)

Re: All things doggy!

Posted: Fri Jun 04, 2010 8:45 am
by dominochase
I think it's a shame that more yards don't allow dogs, because it's the same as dog-friendly pubs. It's self-policing! If a dog causes problems and is badly behaved then they are no longer allowed.

And surely, the more our dogs are socialised with horses, the better behaved around them they will be. My dog was always around horses when he was a puppy, it was just normal for him. After a break from being allowed off-lead around them he is much more nervous around them, and more prone to panic and bark. It's going to take some work to get him back to feeling comfortable around them again, but there is no opportunity for this at the yard I currently ride at.

Of course dogs that are nervous around horses, and horses that are nervous around dogs, should never been introduced to each other, because that will achieve very little except compounding their fears.

Re: All things doggy!

Posted: Fri Jun 04, 2010 9:31 pm
by tinkandlily
i dont see why they can't leave their dogs at home. my yard also has a no dog policiy and my dog is a husky so i can't have him in the car, at first he didn't like it but he got over it.

Re: All things doggy!

Posted: Tue Jun 08, 2010 2:08 pm
by dominochase
I do think sometimes it is not possible to leave your dog at home, particularly if you have to go to the yard straight from somewhere else. However, on weekends, unless your dog is particularly bad in the house or like mentioned above your house turns into an oven because of specific features, why not leave them at home?

Or, take them hacking with you?