It’s the middle of the summer, which means the days are longer and significantly hotter. Some days, it’s almost unbearable to stand the heat for more than a few minutes. Keep in mind your pets feel the same way. Heat stroke is one of the most dangerous conditions your pet can encounter, and it’s important to recognize the signs of heat exhaustion the moment your pet shows symptoms.
- Increased body temperature > 104-110F degrees
- Excessive and ongoing panting and anxiety
- Excessive sticky, thick saliva and dry gums
- Dark red or purple-grey tongue and gums
- Vomiting and diarrhea – often bloody
- Wobbly, staggering, or disoriented
- Collapsed and unwilling or unable to get up
- Seizure and loss of consciousness
- History of hot day, exercise or left unattended in car or the sun
NEVER leave a dog unattended in a car on a warm day regardless if the windows are open as the temperature inside a car can rise dangerously high even on a mild weather day.
- AVOID vigorous exercise and walks on a hot day
- PROVIDE water
- PROVIDE shade
- REDUCE heat exposure to high risk dogs such as those which are short-nosed (brachycephalic), long-haired, young or having heart or airway disease (laryngeal dysfunction)
Move your dog out of the sun and heat to the shade or air conditioning.
Cool your dog by wetting the fur thoroughly with lukewarm, cool but not cold or icy water and increase air movement around them such as with a fan.
CAUTION: Do NOT submerge your dog in water or use very cold or icy water as too rapid cooling may cause other life-threatening medical issues.
When temperature reaches 103.5F degrees, stop cooling efforts.