Keeping Cool This Summer
We might all cross our fingers for a long hot summer, but dogs don’t cope as well as us with the heat.
Factors effecting possible over heating include:
- Too much exercise on a hot day
- Being overweight
- A heavy double coat
- A black coat
- Humidity, reducing the effectiveness of panting
- Muzzles — dogs can’t pant as efficiently while wearing one
- Age — like humans, elderly and younger dogs are less effective at regulating body temperature
- A short nose
- Previous experiences of heatstroke
- Heart or respiratory disorders
- Initial restlessness, barking and whining, followed by:
- Rapid heart rate and excessive panting, which becomes laboured with drooling, followed by:
- Struggling to breathe, dark red gums and glassy eyes
- The rise in body temperature may lead to cell death in the brain, seizures, coma and death
How to deal with heatstroke – Place a cool wet towel over their body and call a vet immediately. Don’t hose or drench them in cold water as this can cause shock.
Kongs are great for preparing cool treats for dogs. They can be filled with wet food or water and then frozen. Dogs have great fun with these!
Ice cubes can be given in moderation and always supervised. Do not use ice if you think your dog is suffering with heat stroke.
Walk dogs at dusk and dawn, avoid taking them out in the middle of the day when temperatures soar.
NEVER LEAVE YOUR DOG IN THE CAR ON A WARM DAY
Even when the temperature outside does not feel too hot, inside the car it can double. Dogs really do DIE in hot cars