Hot dogs belong on the grill, not in your car!
Heatstrokes and heat-related illnesses in pets are very common in Central Texas as the peak summer season arrives. Fortunately, these instances are preventable. Don’t let your dog (or cat) become a hot dog this summer! Please remember your pets can overheat quickly, and the results can be life-threatening.
Keep in mind that pets with certain conditions have an increased risk for heat stroke. Pets that are obese, have heart disease, laryngeal paralysis, seizures, or respiratory disease should be monitored very carefully when outside during the summer.
There are even certain breeds of dogs that are more susceptible to heat-related illness, such as Bulldogs, Boston Terriers, and Pugs (or any other dog that is classified as a brachycephalic breed). These pets should only be in the direct sun for short periods of time unless water and shade are immediately available.
Environmental factors that create problems for overheating in domestic animals include the following:
- Lack of available water
- Confinement in a poorly ventilated area
- High humidity
It is important to understand that pet owners have the ability to control almost all of these factors. Collapse, weakness, stumbling, heavy breathing, and/or a glassy-eyed appearance in your pet after outdoor activity during hot weather means immediate veterinary care is a must. Bring your pet to a cool and well-ventilated area and seek help from the nearest veterinary facility.