FORT LAUDERDALE – These are the dog days of summer and technically summer doesn’t arrive until next week.
When taking Rex out to Bayview Park, Yvanna Strait grabs a water dish and looks for shade.
“I feel his ears and consider going back in the car for air conditioning. I keep track how long we are outside,” she said.
Not overdoing outside is key whether you are walking on four legs or two.
Because South Florida is getting hotter.
“We have noted over the last 30 to 40 years temperatures are up one and a half degrees. It may not seem like a lot but it adds up,” said meteorologist Robert Moheda with the National Weather Service out of Miami.
Making things worse he says is a phenomenon that’s known as ‘urban heat islands.’ All that added concrete and asphalt trapping heat makes nights uncomfortable too.
“At night you expect relief, but it’s not as cool,” he said.
People who work outdoors need to take frequent breaks and avoid heat exhaustion which can happen suddenly.
“We need to watch for the elderly and those who don’t have the means to cool off,” said Moheda.
Air conditioning is the largest driver of energy bills.
Broward offers help for paying your electricity, but you must meet income requirements and you can learn more at Broward.org.
Same for Miami-Dade, where they recommend you visit a community resource center if you need help paying energy bills. For more information, go to MiamiDade.gov.