Dr. Jessica ter Borgh of The Pet Hospital serving Leduc & area.
Long warm summer days are upon us! It’s a beautiful time of year to be outdoors and active especially with our pets. While we all love the summer months, we do need to keep the temperature in mind for our furry friends. Heat stroke is a term commonly used for hyperthermia or elevated body temperature. Body temperatures above 41°C without previous signs of illness are most commonly associated with exposure to environmental heat. Since dogs only have a relatively small number of sweat glands located in their footpads, their primary way of regulating body temperature is by panting. Dogs with restricted airways such as the brachycephalic breeds (flat faced dogs such as pugs, boxers and bulldogs) are at greater risk. In these breeds, clinical signs of heat stroke can occur when the outside temperature and humidity are only moderately elevated.
Signs of heatstroke: - vomiting - diarrhea - excessive panting, sticky or dry gums, red gums - staggering, lethargy If your pet displays any of these symptoms please seek veterinary care as soon as possible.
Take Precautions: 1. Always have a fresh source of water available, try adding ice cubes for immediate cooling. 2. Find shade/ air condition. 3. Take breaks/ rest. 4. Wait for the cool hours of the day to play (early morning/ late evening). 5. Kids play pools provide a great way for your dog to cool itself in the back yard. Dogs will often sit and even lay in the water!
Have fun but remember, if you are feeling hot, so are they!