2015-07-15 / Front Page

Dogs & Cats Can Suffer Heat Stroke, Too

By Liz Goff
Veterinarians and animal advocates are urging pet owners to learn proper care of pets that can become overheated or dehydrated during summer months – especially when the city is hit with a heat wave.

“It doesn’t have to be 90-degrees for pets to become overheated in the summer,” advocates said. “When it’s a sunny, 75-degrees outside, temperatures can soar to over 90-degrees inside homes and businesses without air conditioning,” the advocates said. Kittens and puppies, cats and dogs and other pets can suffer a stroke or worse, or they can succumb to lengthy exposure to the intense heat.”.

Pets that appear sluggish, who vomit frequently or seem disoriented could be suffering heat stroke, advocates said.

“Avoid taking pets outdoors at the hottest times of the day, try to keep pets in an air-conditioned environment, limit activity and provide lots of cool water during periods of extreme heat,” the advocates said.

“Walk your pet for short periods of time, try to stay in the shade – and return home if your pet starts to pant or breathe rapidly or irregularly, they said. And never, ever leave a pet in a vehicle during periods of extreme heat, even with the windows “cracked open.”

Leaving pets in overheated cars is a sure path to tragedy,” advocates said. “Pets should not be left in poorly ventilated cars at any time, but remember – if it’s too hot for you to sit in a vehicle with the windows almost closed, it’s too hot for your pet.”

If your pet gets overheated, spray him with cool water, when possible. If you are outdoors, buy a bottle of water ant slowly pour it over your pet to aid in the cooling process,” advocates said. “And make sure you give your pet drinking water as part of the process.”

Pets that do not respond to cooling-down efforts should be taken to a local veterinarian or a city animal hospital for emergency treatment, advocates said. “Remember, your pet is feeling the heat a lot more severely than you do, so don’t risk losing him for a lack of knowing what to do in a heat emergency.”

 

                                                                                               

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