Temperatures in cars during this type of weather can rise to nearly 200 degrees, Amanda Knittle, public affairs specialist for AAA Mid-Atlantic, said in a written release.
Knittle suggests people run errands in the early morning or late afternoon and refuel cars after dark during extreme heat. If a vehicle has been parked in the heat for a prolonged period, open the doors and windows before getting in to allow time for the vehicle's interior to cool off is recommended.
Sun shields covering the windshield can help minimize the baking effect of the sun's rays on car upholstery, Knittle wrote. It also helps to cover metal safety belts and child safety seats to prevent burning from those objects, the release states.
Paul Miller, executive director of The Humane Society of Washington County, agreed that no animal should be left in a car. Animals can also get heat stroke.
"Bring them into the air conditioning," he said.
If a pet owner believes their pet is suffering from heat stroke, they should "get that animal in cool water as soon as possible" and the animal should be taken to a veterinarian as soon as possible.
Pets will appear disoriented, pant excessively and have an increased heartbeat, Miller said.
Dogs' gums may also turn a muddy pink color when they are undergoing a heat stroke, he said.
Miller said if it's not possible to take animals inside, make sure they have twice the amount of water than usual while outdoors. He suggests putting water in a dish that won't tip, preferably one that is not metal or does not attract heat.
If animals must be outside, make sure they have ample shade, Miller said. Avoid putting animals near asphalt or macadam because they might try to walk on the surfaces and burn their pads, he said.
If there is no air conditioning in the home, run fans to circulate the air, he said.
Miller asks anyone who sees animals outside who appear dehydrated or mistreated to call The Humane Society at 301-733-2060.