Summer and Pets
Summer heat can be dangerous for your family pets. Follow these steps to help ensure your pet stays safe this summer.
- Don’t leave your pet in a hot vehicle, even for a few minutes. The inside temperature of the car can quickly reach 120 degrees even with the windows cracked open.
- Generally, when it’s 85 degrees or higher outside, high risk breeds/animals should be kept inside and only brought out for short, slow, walks.
- Animals can suffer from heat stroke, just like humans. Dogs with short noses or snouts, overweight or senior pets, those with thick coats, or those with breathing problems such as collapsing trachea are more prone to heat stroke. Examples of breeds that should be monitored carefully in hot or humid weather are Boston terriers, pugs, boxers, huskies, golden retrievers, and all bulldogs.
- Some signs of heat stroke in your pet are heavy panting, being unable to calm down even when lying down, brick red gum color, fast pulse rate and being unable to get up.
- If you suspect your pet has heat stroke, take their temperature rectally. If the temperature is above 105 degrees, cool the animal down. The easiest way to do this is by using a water hose. Stop cooling the animal when the temperature reaches 103 degrees.
- Bring your pet to the veterinarian as soon as possible as heat stroke can lead to severe organ dysfunction and damage. Download the Red Cross Pet First Aid app for instant access on how to treat heat stroke, other emergencies and general care for cats and dogs.
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