Heatstroke is common in dogs just like it is with young children. My mantra has to always recommend that people treat their pets like they would treat their children. I have always said this because I feel it lifts pets up from a lowly platform where many people don’t consider the ramifications of what could happen to their pet because “it’s just a pet” and not a member of the family.
Summer is coming and that means so is the heat (even if it has been unseasonably cool here in the Chicago area) and we need to think about ways to prevent our precious little friends from being affected from the high temperatures.
1. Never leave your pet in your car unattended.
K9 Rescue says that even on a pleasant 75°F day, it will take only 10 minutes to reach 100°F inside the car.
2. If your pets spend most of their time outdoors, make sure they have adequate shelter, not just from the sun but also from the heat.
Set up pools, sprinklers, and shady areas with plenty of water.
3. Avoid high-intensity exercise, as pets can overheat, especially if they are a Brachycephalic (smushy-faced) breed such as pugs or French bulldogs.
Real-life example: Lizzie, a French bulldog, needed emergency care for her heatstroke and came home with a vet bill totaling a little over $2,100.
4. Avoid hot cement to keep your pet’s paws safe.
If the pavement is too hot for your bare hands, it’s too hot for your pet’s paws. (This is something many parents consider when allowing children on pavement so why not apply it to their pups as well?)
5. Know the signs of heatstroke.
Get to the vet immediately if you see the following symptoms:
- Elevated body temperature (103º to 106ºF)
- Excessive panting, drooling
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