Tesla is not only concerned about the environment, it is also worried about your pets. CEO Elon Musk revealed last Thursday that the company will debut two new Enhanced Autopilot features next week via an over-the-air software update, including one that will keep dogs cool and entertained in hot weather while their owners run errands.
Back in October, Twitter user Josh Atchley asked Musk if he could create a Dog Mode for the Model 3. Atchley was hoping the setting would leave a Tesla’s air conditioning and music on while in park, so owners could leave their dogs in the car alone. He also suggested that Dog Mode include “a display on screen saying, ‘I’m fine my owner will be right back.'”
Musk responded the following day to Atchley’s request with a “Yes.” In his Tweet this week, Musk confirmed that Dog Mode could arrive as early as February 11. In an additional Tweet, Atchley also requested that Dog Mode display how long an owner has been gone for as well as the current temperature of the car.
According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, every year, hundreds of pets die from heat exhaustion after being left in parked cars. The temperature inside a vehicle can increase 20º F in just 10 minutes. In 20 minutes, it can increase 30º F, and in 60 minutes, the temperature in a car can be more than 40 degrees higher than the outside temperature. Therefore, on a 70-degree day, it can be 110 degrees inside a car, putting pets at risk of serious illness and even death.
The other Enhanced Autopilot feature coming next week is Sentry Mode, which was also requested via Twitter. On January 22, user Andy Sutton tagged Musk on Twitter in a photo of his damaged Tesla, adding that he would like a “360 dash cam feature while parked.” Again, Musk responded immediately.
“Tesla Sentry Mode coming soon for all cars with Enhanced Autopilot,” Mush wrote. Afterwards, he elaborated that the setting would “play Bach’s Toccata and Fugue during a robbery (and keep Summer safe).” Summer is a reference a “Rick and Morty” episode in which Rick takes Morty inside the car battery to repair it and leaves Summer in the car after giving it the instruction "Keep Summer safe."