Emergency calls to Humane Society spike on Phoenix's fourth-hottest day ever

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Emergency animal medical technicians with the Arizona Humane Society responded to at least 55 heat-related calls Tuesday. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Emergency animal medical technicians with the Arizona Humane Society responded to at least 55 heat-related calls Tuesday. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
About half of those calls related to the heat. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) About half of those calls related to the heat. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
Cooper found a long-haired cat with an internal temperature of 106 degrees. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) Cooper found a long-haired cat with an internal temperature of 106 degrees. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
At the Humane Society’s Second Chance Animal Trauma Hospital, veterinarians have treated several animals for heat-related issues in recent days. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5) At the Humane Society’s Second Chance Animal Trauma Hospital, veterinarians have treated several animals for heat-related issues in recent days. (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)
PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -

Emergency animal medical technicians with the Arizona Humane Society responded to dozens of heat-related calls Tuesday, the fourth-hottest day in recorded history in Phoenix.

EAMTs responded to 55 calls as of 4:30 p.m., with about half related to the heat, said Arizona Humane Society spokeswoman Bretta Nelson. Tuesday’s high temperature reached 119 degrees.

[READ MORE: Crazy heat! Summer starts with a bang as Phoenix temps reach 119]

Technicians responded to just three heat-related calls last Tuesday when temperatures were in the double digits, Nelson said.

Many of the calls were from neighbors reporting animals without water, said emergency medical technician Lori Cooper.

“It does not take that long without water for them to start overheating or dehydrating,” she said.

[SPECIAL SECTION: Extreme Heat]

Cooper found a long-haired cat with an internal temperature of 106 degrees.

“That’s crazy high,” she said.

At the Humane Society’s Second Chance Animal Trauma Hospital, veterinarians have treated several animals for heat-related issues in recent days, said spokeswoman Ashliegh Goebel.

“Pet owners that have dogs like boxers, English bulldogs, French bulldogs, anything with a short muzzle, they don't tolerate the heat very well,” she said.

Older and overweight pets are also more at risk from the heat, she said.

[RELATED: MCSO Animal Crimes Unit keeping an eye out for pets in distress during extreme temps]

Signs of heat stress in animals include extremely heavy panting, bright pink or red gums, and redness around the eyes, Cooper said. In some cases, vomiting may also be an indication, Goebel said.

[RELATED: MCSO reminds owners to keep pets cool during extreme heat]

Veterinarians at Second Chance have recently treated some animals for burns to their paws from hot concrete, although no animals were undergoing such treatment on Tuesday, according to Goebel.

[RELATED: Protect your dog's paws in extreme heat]

“If it's too hot for us to place our hands on the concrete, it's too hot for the animals to be walking on the concrete also,” Cooper said.

State law requires pet owners to provide adequate food, shelter, and water at all times. Under an ordinance passed last year, pet owners in the City of Phoenix can face criminal penalties for leaving a dog tethered outside when temperatures exceed 100 degrees.

Click here to learn more about ways to report suspected animal cruelty, or to report a sick or injured stray.

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Derek StaahlDerek Staahl is an Emmy Award-winning reporter and fill-in anchor who loves covering stories that matter most to Arizona families.

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Derek Staahl

This once-uncompromising "California guy" got his first taste of Arizona in 2015 while covering spring training baseball for his former station. The trip spanned just three days, but Derek quickly decided Phoenix should be his next address. He joined CBS 5 and 3TV four months later, in August 2015. Before packing his bags for the Valley of the Sun, Derek spent nearly four years at XETV in San Diego, where he was promoted to Weekend Anchor and Investigative Reporter. Derek chaired the Saturday and Sunday 10 p.m. newscasts, which regularly earned the station's highest ratings for a news program each week. Derek’s investigative reporting efforts into the Mayor Bob Filner scandal in 2013 sparked a "governance crisis" for the city of San Diego and was profiled by the region’s top newspaper. Derek broke into the news business at WKOW-TV in Madison, WI. He wrote, shot, edited, and presented stories during the week, and produced newscasts on the weekends. By the end of his stint, he was promoted to part-time anchor on WKOW’s sister station, WMSN. Derek was born in Los Angeles and was named the “Undergraduate Broadcast Journalism Student of the Year” in his graduating class at USC. He also played quads in the school’s famous drumline. When not reporting the news, Derek enjoys playing drumset, sand volleyball, and baseball.

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