How to Avoid Heatstroke in Dogs
Dogs don’t have sweat glands like a human so they pant to make the body cool during summer. But when the body temperature is higher than the usual temperature, and the dog can no longer sustain the high temperature, it gets ‘heatstroke’. One of the most common reasons for heatstroke in pets is leaving them in places which are too warm, a parked car or a recreational vehicle (RV).
Five ways to protect your pets from heatstroke
- Water: Water consumption is essential for us as humans, and the same is true for our pets. You must be sure that you brought a sufficient amount of water (at least 2 liters) for your pets, anytime you take your four-legged friend out.
- Never leave pets unattended: You must never leave your pets unattended for any amount of time in a vehicle that is not properly equipped to keep the temperature cool. Regular A/C in a car or leaving the windows down may not be sufficient to keep the pet safe and cool. The temperature in a car/RV can rise rapidly in just 10 minutes.
- Keep them in shady spots: When you have to leave your pet outside or you go to the places where pets are not allowed, leave them in a place where you have a lot of tree shade for the pet to play but not in the parked car.
- Small Workout Sessions: Every pet skips the workout sessions during winter because of snowfall and ice. During summer, pets have plenty of time and place to have fun and do exercise. Take them to a nearby park for not more than 30 minutes a day. Exercising along with your pet is also a great idea! Pets love to workout (indoor or outdoor) along with the owners because they can spend time with the loved one.
Read here why you/ pet owners should exercise with their pets.
- Monitor temperature: It’s crucial to check the environment temperature of your pet while you’re away, whether in your house, in your backyard, at a park, in a closed room, or in a car or RV. You need to monitor pet’s condition when you’re away using a system that monitors temperature continuously and alerts you in case it goes too high thus keeping the pets safe.
Symptoms of heatstroke
If you notice any of these symptoms, your pet may be suffering from heatstroke and it is critical.
- Body temperature reaches 104-110 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Strong heartbeat
- Rapid panting
- Excessive thirst
- Red gums
- Glazed eyes
Steps to consider when your dog is affected with heatstroke
Pets that are mildly affected can recover slowly with proper care but those who are affected extremely need veterinary advice. There are some first-aid steps you should follow until your pet can be seen by a vet.
- Give water with some ice cubes.
- Measure the dog’s temperature every five minutes, with continuous water-cooling until it drops below 103°F (39.4°C).
- Bring down the heat by shifting the pet to a cool location.
- Take the pet immediately to the vet.