How to Protect Your Pets from the Heat This Summer
Summer’s a fun season to be a pet owner because there are so many opportunities for enjoying the outdoors together. While you play, these tips will keep your pets safe from the heat.
Top 7 Summer Safety Tips for Pets
1. Assess the Temperature
Remember that temperature isn’t the only factor affecting the heat your pet experiences; humidity plays a big part, too. Check the forecast before going out with your pets or leaving them unattended outdoors.
2. Avoid Sunburn
Some pets have thick coats that are actually designed to keep them cool. Before trimming your dog’s fur, ask our veterinarian what an appropriate length of cut is for your pet (usually no shorter than about 2-inches) or whether your dog’s coat should be trimmed at all. Dogs with double coats do best with regular brushings to encourage the natural shedding process instead of haircuts.
3. Never Leave a Pet in the Car
The temperature inside a car – even with the windows down – will become dangerously hot in minutes. If your pet can’t come inside, leave them home with the A.C. on.
4. Provide Shade and Water
To regulate body temperature, pets need plenty of water to keep them hydrated and a cool, shady spot to rest.
5. Exercise Safely
Limit exercise on hot days and during the hottest times of the day. Pets will overheat easily when the sun is directly overhead. It’s best to go out for walks in the early morning or late evening. Also, be mindful of the hot pavement, as it can easily burn your pet’s tender paws.
6. Enjoy a Cool Treat
Ice cubes in a water bowl or frozen banana and peanut butter pops are a tasty way to cool down.
7. Recognize the Signs of Heatstroke
Heatstroke can lead to organ damage and even death if left unaddressed. Heavy panting, loss of balance, confusion, glazed eyes, excessive drooling, extreme thirst, vomiting, and diarrhea are all signs of heatstroke.
Be Prepared to Act Fast with Emergency Pet Care
If your pet begins showing signs of heatstroke, take action to cool them down right away. Move them to a shady location, put their paws in cool water, and encourage them to drink. It usually is not a good idea to douse an overheated animal with ice-cold water, as this can cause shock.
No pet owner expects an emergency, but they do happen. Keep the phone number for Wesson Animal Clinic’s emergency service available at all times and contact us immediately if your pet has symptoms of heatstroke.