It's hot. It's really hot. It's really too hot for our animals who can't take off their fur coats or take a refreshing dip anytime they want.
Have you ever put yourself in their shoes and walked around in your winter parka on a hot summer day? Try it. It's not pleasant.
Have you ever walked across hot, black pavement with say, only socks on? Try it. It's not even remotely pleasant.
But, more than just unpleasant, the summer months can arrive with dangerous risks for your dogs and cats.
Heat stroke can rapidly occur if a pet is left in a car, boat, home or even in the back of a truck exposed to sun.
Our pets' normal body temperature is 101.5, compared to our 98.6. Their fur coats are not removable and can only dissipate heat via panting or sweating in their paws. Panting is not only a lot of work, but, is an inefficient way to reduce body heat quickly, especially if the air they are breathing is hot.
The average car can heat up to 120 degrees within 15 minutes! Add that to an already warmer pet and, well, it's not pretty.
I don't like to market fear, but, heat stroke is one of the most awful things that can happen to your pet.
The death from heat stroke is painful, the guilt unbearable, and it can happen much easier than you think. Thinking about the risk and knowing what to do is always valuable.
Signs of heat stroke in your pet:
- Hard panting, difficult breathing
- Rapid heart rate
- Increased thirst
- Dizziness, loss of coordination, trembling
- Very, very red gums
- Vomiting, bloody diarrhea
- Seizures, loss of consciousness
- Temperature over 104 degrees
Which pets are predisposed to heat stroke:
- Short-nosed dogs
- Pets new to hot weather (not acclimated)
- Thick-coated pets
- Dogs and cats with past history of heat stroke
- Pets left in the car on a hot day
- Dogs or cats with poor sun shelter and protection
What can you do for your pet if you see signs of heat stroke? First, don't panic!
- Spray or pour cool water on the feet, belly and head
- Apply cold/wet towels to the feet, belly and head
- Turn on a fan
- Attempt to decrease body temperature to 103 within 15 minutes
- Homeopathic remedies
- Get to the vet asap!
In my 3-part course on HOMEOPATHY FOR PET EMERGENCIES, we discuss using homeopathic remedies for all sort of emergencies, including heat stroke and other summer emergencies. Purchase your homeopathic kit here.