Everyone loves spending the long, summer days outdoors with their four-legged best friends. But, being too eager in hot weather can mean trouble. High temperatures during summer can cause your furry companion to suffer from life-threatening heatstroke. Even activities as simple as walking your dog during warm weather can cause distress. Keep your pet safe this summer with these hot weather precautions.
Hot Summer Safety Tips for Pets
Mind your walking hours. You don’t need to ditch the walk altogether during summer as your pooch still needs exercise. Plan your walk times carefully, instead. This means that you have to take your dog out for walks early in the morning or late evening. As much as possible, avoid doing it in the middle of the day as the pavements can burn his paws. Walking your pet on hot asphalts when the temperatures are at their highest also increases its risk of overheating.
Provide adequate shade and drinking water. Your pet can quickly get dehydrated when it’s hot and humid outdoors. Ensure that your dog is kept indoors or has a shady place to get out of the sun. Also, give them access to plenty of fresh, clean water to drink. Never over-exercise your pet as they can get much thirstier than you do. When your dog’s bodily fluid drops five percent, you may notice signs of dehydration. These include panting, excessive drooling, dry gums, and sometimes vomiting with or without diarrhea. In severe cases, it could lead to shock, unconsciousness, and even death.
Never leave your pet unattended in a parked car. Some people think that leaving their pets inside a hot vehicle for a few minutes is not a big deal. But, parked cars can instantly confine the sun’s heat in just a matter of minutes. In fact, your dog may develop heatstroke within just 10 minutes. Leaving the windows open will not eliminate the risk of heatstroke in a hot car. Not only is leaving your pet alone in a vehicle dangerous, but some states have specific laws to protect animals from this avoidable danger.
Know the signs of heatstroke. A dog’s normal temperature ranges from 100 to 103 degrees Fahrenheit. If it rises above 104 degrees Fahrenheit, it can spell danger. Signs of heat exhaustion in dogs include panting, hypersalivation, and dry nose. Your dog may also be warm to touch, have bright red gums, and rapid heart rate. Other symptoms include vomiting, muscle tremors, seizures, coma, and worse, death.
If your dog seems to show signs of heatstroke, its best chance of survival is gradually lowering its body temperature. To do this, move your pet to a shaded, cool area. Place a damp towel over its body or douse it with cool water. To avoid shock, do not use cold water. Let your dog drink small amounts of fresh, cool water. Take your pooch to the nearest veterinarian. Do you need more pet care advice? Visit Madison Animal Care Hospital today in St. Madison, Alabama. Call us now at (256) 461-7575 to make an appointment.