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Heat Stroke in Dogs

Posted on 31st Mar 2014 @ 3:30 PM

It is essential that we can recognise the first signs of heat exhaustion, which are rapid breathing & rapid heart rate, your dog, will appear distressed & pant excessively & become restless. As they become worse their body temperature increases & they may start to drool large amounts of saliva & start to stagger. Your dog’s gums may become blue, white or bright red.

 If the dog has been left in a car on an extremely hot day, you must get the dog out of the car & cool it down immediately. Hose it down if possible & then get the dog into air conditioning with a fan on them as well. Don’t leave a wet towel over them as the heat needs to escape. Do not use ice water as it will constrict the blood vessels & stop the heat escaping.

Give your dog enough water to wet his mouth & throat but don’t let them drink huge amounts of water. Ice packs can be applied underneath their front legs, and to the groin area to help cool quickly. You can also take your dog's temperature anally.

Then take your dog to the nearest emergency vet. Monitor your dog whilst on your way to the vet & once your dog’s temperature is normal again, cease cooling procedures.

Brachycephalic” breeds (flat faces like British Bulldogs, Pugs, Griffon Bruxellois etc). are more prone to heatstroke. Also obesity & diseases in the dog’s airways can be a factor of heat stroke happening to your dog.

 If your dog’s temperature continues to increase, they will collapse & then become comatose. If veterinary help is not found immediately the dog may soon die.