Heatstroke is a severe condition that occurs when the body becomes too hot—it’s different from heat exhaustion because it affects both dogs’ bodies and brains. Dogs have a more challenging time regulating their body temperatures than humans do; they cool themselves off by panting, but when the outside temperature is high enough to make them overheat from exertion or exercise, they can’t do this efficiently enough to keep themselves safe from heatstroke-related complications like organ damage or death.
Summer is almost upon us, and while it’s an excellent time for people who enjoy the fresh air to get out and enjoy it with their pup, there are some things you need to do to ensure that your dog is safe from overheating. The last thing anyone wants is for their dog to overheat in the heat of summer. Luckily, there are plenty of ways to ensure that doesn’t happen!
Move your pet to a cool area
If you suspect your dog is overheated, move him to a cool area. This can be a porch or even a garage. Place him in front of a fan and give him ice water. If you don’t have ice on hand, use cold water—it will still help bring the temperature down!
If these steps don’t lower his temperature, try applying cool, wet towels to the dog’s body and taking him for a walk in the shade. If his temperature rises after 20-30 minutes, take your pet to see a vet immediately; if left untreated, heatstroke can lead to organ damage or death within hours!
Make sure there is plenty of shade for your dog
To protect your dog from heatstroke, ensure plenty of shade. A tree, umbrella or another object can provide shade. Ensure the shadow is close enough to a heat source, such as a fire. If you have no other options for providing shade and your dog has been running around in the sun all day, then it’s okay to place him on an ice pack with towels underneath so he doesn’t get chilled or hurt himself while lying down on it.
The shade should be relaxed, not cold – definitely no ice packs!
Make sure that the area where he will rest is close enough to you so you can keep an eye on him but far enough away from every other animal (especially if they’re also sick) and out of plain sight so that people who are passing by don’t see them lying there alone (this could lead into some unwanted attention).
Never leave water bowls in the sun
As we all know, heat is a killer. It’s also hazardous to pets. If you live in a warm climate or have an air conditioner struggling to keep up with summer heat, it can be tempting to leave your dog’s water bowl out on the patio, so it stays cool when they need it most. But this is one of the worst things you could do! Heat causes evaporation, which makes even cold liquids hotter than they should be—and if they’re exposed to direct sunlight, they can get dangerously hot. A glass of room-temperature tap water heated up by just one degree will cause severe burns if consumed by an animal (and significant damage if ingested). Never leave a pet alone outdoors where there’s no shade from trees or other objects that might provide some relief from direct sunlight on nearby surfaces like sidewalks or concrete driveways—and especially not near open windows where gusts of wind are likely to bring even more heat into your home throughout the day.
If you have ever wondered how to keep your dog from drinking too much hot water during these sweltering days but still feel like something needs doing about their thirstiness problem: buy them a collapsible bowl! They’re cheap enough ($3-$5) that buying multiple sizes will allow each member of your household access without having excess dishes lying around, taking up space, plus saving money overall since fewer dishes mean less chance at breakage too!
Always make sure your dog has plenty of fresh water
Always give your dog plenty of fresh water to keep it safe from heatstroke. If they’re thirsty, they should let you know by panting heavily. You also want to avoid letting them drink too much, so don’t leave water bowls out in the sun or fill them with ice cubes (which will melt and cause them to over-drink). If your dog is 30 pounds, use a bowl that holds at least 30 ounces.
The depth should be no more than one inch deep—this prevents any spillage when your pup drinks but still allows them room for air intake while drinking from it.
Use a kiddie pool filled with clean, cool water or a hose turned to mist
You can also use a kiddie pool filled with clean, cool water or a hose turned to mist. Keep the water in the shade, and keep it fresh. If your dog is getting excited and trying to jump out of the pool, then you should turn off the water so they don’t get knocked around by it.
Remember that dogs are more susceptible to heatstroke than humans—so always keep an eye on them when playing outside!
Keep physical activities to a minimum
Dogs love to exercise, but not in the heat. Over-exercising can lead to dehydration and heatstroke. If your dog is used to having a midday run or regular playtime with toys and other dogs, it’s essential that you continue these activities—just not on hot days. The best time for physical activity is early morning or late evening when it’s cooler outside. Consider limiting the frequency of your walks during those times, too, if it’s boiling out (and don’t forget the sunscreen!
- Take your dog for a walk! Just don’t run or play fetch with them; both are forms of intense exercise that should be limited in hot weather. Instead, go for longer walks than usual, so they get plenty of fresh air and some time outdoors, away from the house where there isn’t much shade.
Avoid hot surfaces; they can burn your pup’s feet
You should also avoid hot surfaces, which can be just as dangerous for your dog’s health. Hot pavement and asphalt can burn their feet, causing blisters that can become infected. And even if you don’t see any signs of discomfort in your dog, all it takes is one step on a hot surface to cause pain and suffering.
Don’t leave your dog in the car
Dogs and cats shed their fur coats in the summer, making them more vulnerable to heatstroke than humans. It only takes a few seconds of exposure for them to suffer brain damage or become blind.
According to research conducted by the American Veterinary Medical Association, a medium-sized dog may succumb to heatstroke within 20 minutes on an 85-degree day with no breeze—this means that even if your pet has access to water and shade in a parked car without A/C running, they could still suffer from overheating after being left alone for just 10 minutes!
To help your dog stay healthy and safe, take a few simple steps to keep him cool this summer. Talk to your vet at Parliament Animal Hospital about the best ways to help your pet stay calm, then remember: never leave your pet in the car.
If you want the best of anything, our vets are knowledgeable and friendly, and we treat your pets like they are our pets. Please go ahead and give us a call right now!