Baby, it’s HOT outside! Sadly, no matter how hard the media and public officials try to get the word out about how our heat here in Southern Maryland can kill, people either don’t get the message or don’t heed it.
I recently watched a video of a dog with heatstroke. The owner kept it in the backyard in Arizona and, as hard as they tried to cool it down, it eventually died.
Do you know how to recognize heat stroke in your dog and what to do to combat it?
The experts at PetMD claim that heatstroke in dogs is typically associated with air temperatures of 106 degrees Fahrenheit and higher.
It doesn’t take long for the heat to affect our pets. If you leave them outdoors, shade isn’t enough. They need lots of water too. But, really, bring them indoors. It’s the only sure way to protect them.
Look for these symptoms of heatstroke:
- Deep red or purple tongue
- Excessive thirst
- Glazed eyes
- Heavy or difficult breathing
- Lack of coordination
- Profuse salivation
- Rapid heartbeat
How to treat a dog suffering from heatstroke
- Move the dog to an air-conditioned area.
- Apply cold, wet towels to the head, neck, and chest or pour cool (not cold) water over the dog.
- Use a syringe or eye dropper to give the dog tiny amounts of water.
- See a veterinarian ASAP.
How to prevent heatstroke in your dog
If you don’t think the sidewalk is hot when the weather is, bend down and touch it. Better yet, check out this chart from the National Weather Service:
- Walk your dog early in the morning before the ground has a chance to heat up.
- Consider buying shoes for your dog. (Check out the five-star rated RoyalCare Dog Boots Paw Protectors and the summer-weight HiPaw Summer Breathable Mesh boots, both at Amazon.)
- Provide lots of shade and water when outdoors.
- Use a body vest meant to keep dogs cool. (the Expawlorer Cooling Vest gets good reviews at Amazon.com as does the BINGPET Dog Cooling Jacket.)
- Use a dog cooling pad for the outdoor dog. Amazon offers the isYoung Pet Cooling Mat, which requires no electricity.
- If you must leave the dog in your backyard, consider buying a pet pool (they’re sturdier than kiddie pools and won’t be as easily punctured by the dog’s nails) and placing it in a shady area. Introduce the dog to it so that it knows it can find relief from the heat by jumping in.
Two pools at Amazon are particularly popular PUPTECK Foldable Dog Swimming Pool AND Midlee Dog Pool.
Of course, you know to NEVER, EVER leave your dog in a car on a hot day, right? No, not even with the windows cracked.
Finally, create or buy a dog first aid kit. You never know when your dog may need help.
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