Heatstroke (also known as hyperthermia) is something parents of young children think about plenty in the summer. But humans aren’t the only ones that can suffer from heatstroke. Dogs too can suffer from Heatstroke also known as Dog Heatstroke.
Dog Heatstroke isn’t always on pet owners’ radars but failing to recognize the signs can be extremely dangerous — even deadly — to your beloved furry friend. Dogs are the most at-risk because they spend more time outdoors and travelling with us in vehicles than other pets. As dog lovers, we want our companions to do everything with us — especially when summertime comes.
Know the signs of Dog Heatstroke
That’s why it’s crucial to know the signs of heatstroke and keep an eye out for them when you’re outdoors in warm weather or travelling with your pet. Excessive heat that raises your dog’s body temperature over 103 degrees Fahrenheit can cause severe, potentially fatal, damage to your dog’s brain, heart, and liver.
These are 5 signs you must never ignore that indicate your pup is in heat-related distress
1. Rapid Panting
Dogs pant to regulate their body temperature and stay cool. Some amount of panting is normal and healthy. However, when panting isn’t enough, their body temperature can quickly rise to dangerous levels. The minute you notice excessive panting, get your dog out of the heat, to a cool or shady area, with access to plenty of freshwaters.
2. Colour changes in the tongue and/or gums
Checking the colour of his tongue and gums is a good proactive measure to keep your dog’s body temperature cool. The tongue and gums can become dark red in colour as the body temperature rises. A paler than normal colour in the gums can also be a sign of heatstroke, as it can indicate oxygen deficiency. If you notice this, head indoors or for the shade and allow your dog access to plenty of cool water. If you think oxygen depletion is occurring, call your vet or get to an emergency vet department immediately.
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If your dog is lethargic, not getting up, or off-balance, these can all be very serious signs of heatstroke that should never be ignored. This behaviour can be the result of internal organ damage brought on by excessive heat.
These symptoms can be a result of dehydration and/or internal distress brought on by heat. If your dog is having diarrhoea or vomiting as a result of heat, offer her freshwater and call your vet immediately.
Coma is a depressed level of consciousness. He may initially act confused, and not obey commands. Stupor can progress to a total loss of consciousness. If your dog is not responding and cannot be awakened, call your vet and get him to a care centre immediately.
Remember, dogs can’t tell us they’re in distress. While we often think of them as just another family member, we must remember that our dogs can’t tell us they’re too hot or don’t feel well. By the time they’re showing outward signs of distress, the situation can already be extremely serious.
It’s up to us to take every precaution to keep our pooches safe from overheating whether outdoors, indoors, or travelling in a vehicle. Wherever your dog happens to be accompanying you, pack plenty of fresh water and select activities where it will be easy to find shade and cool temps.
If your pet will be accompanying you anywhere that will require her spending time alone in a vehicle or RV, make sure you have a proper pet temperature monitor. This ensures the vehicle stays at a safe temperature. These monitors can be used inside your home while you’re away too.
By being proactive and sensible you can keep your dog safe this summer from Dog Heatstroke!