Alarming numbers of pets are being left in hot cars this summer prompting RSPCA Queensland to call on owners to take better care of their fur-kids.
With a heatwave to hit the Sunshine State this weekend, the RSPCA warned of the risk of heat stress or death to pets.
The organisation said since January 1 there had been 183 calls - more than four each day - relating to animals being left in hot cars.
There had also been 584 calls about animals being left with insufficient or no water and 303 reports of animals being unable to access shade.
RSPCA spokesperson Michael Beatty described the numbers as astonishing and said he couldn't understand how people were unaware of the dangers.
"If it's 30 degrees outside, the temperature inside a car can potentially rise to well over 40 degrees in less than five minutes," he said.
"It beggars belief that people are ignoring the warnings."
He said owners needed to be more mindful of the need for animals to have access to shade and water.
"A dog can survive for days without food, but in these temperatures, if they don't have shade or can't reach water they'll die," Mr Beatty said.
The RSPCA is recommending all owners provide two to three containers of water for their pets and to avoid exercising them in the middle of the day.
Australian Associated Press