HOT WEATHER SAFETY TIPS
1. Know the symptoms of your pet overheating
One of the first signs you will see when your dog is getting too hot is excessive panting. So how do you tell the difference between normal and excessive panting? If your dog is breathing as if they are from an intense run, yet they are just taking a stroll then most likely they are overheating.
Other signs are excessive drooling, fast and irregular heartbeats, lethargic behavior, disorientation and vomiting and diarrhea.
Do you think your dog is overheating? Since each breed is different and some drool more than others, it’s important to know your pets “normal”. Are you unsure though? It’s always better to be safe than sorry!
1. Immediately take your dog to a cooler area.
2. Wet your pet with cool water, but not cold water since rapid cooling can be dangerous.
3. Place your pet in front of a fan to dry off. Check their temperature every few minutes, and if you have a pet thermometer, you can use it. Once the temperature gets to 103 degrees (F) stop wetting and fanning them.
4. As your pet continues to cool give them cool (not cold or ice) water to drink.
Remember overheating, and heatstroke is life-threatening. So even if your dog is recovering okay, you need to get them to your veterinarian for monitoring and treatment.
Don’t leave your dog in the car even if the windows are cracked. Even on a cool day where temperatures are in the 60s, the temperature in a closed car rises to 130 F in minutes. The dog’s own body temperature increases the heat and moisture (especially for larger breeds), the oxygen is used up, and death can occur within 15 minutes.
If you see an animal locked in a car with the windows up and you cannot locate the owner, stay by the car and call 911.
3. Don’t shave your pets hair
We know that as a responsible pet parent, you want to do everything you can to keep your best four-legged friends cool. So w
hen you look at your furry dog or long-haired cat wearing a thick, fluffy coat, you might feel tempted to break out your grooming tools – but don’t! Just like a dog’s coat keeps him from getting too cold in the winter, it also keeps him from overheating in the summer. It’s best to leave it to the professionals. Take your pets to a professional groomer and they can ensure to trim them down without effecting their natural protection.
4. Don’t walk your pets on the hot asphalt
When the sun is out, surfaces like asphalt or metal can get really hot! Surprisingly, the sun doesn’t even need to be in full effect for them to get warm enough. It’s a good idea to keep your pet off of hot asphalt; not only can it burn paws, but it can also increase body temperature and lead to overheating. You should also limit your pets daily walks to early morning or late evenings during the warmer months to ensure their safety.
5. Never leave your pets unsupervised by the pool
Not all dogs are naturally good swimmers so if your dog falls in, they might not be able to figure out how to get out. If it’s their first time swimming, it’s best to take things slow and adapt to your dog. Some other things to consider is that your dog shouldn’t ingest the pool water which contains chemicals. It’s natural for kids and pets to ingest some of the water in small quantities at some point but it’s important not to allow them to openly drink it. Be sure to hose your furry friend down after their swim too to ensure the chemicals don’t sit on their fur coats.
Being outside in the summer can be both enjoyable and fun for you and your furry friends. Just be alert and proactive to ensure the health and safety for both of you!