THE WEATHER. It’s the uncontrollable variable that can quickly affect your plans when you’re traveling with your pets.
This week Austin greeted us with unexpectedly warm temperatures. As much as we were looking forward to seeing this city – recognized as one of America’s most pet friendly – highs in the upper 90s mean we’ll be curtailing our outdoor activities for Buster and Ty’s safety.
As summer arrives in all parts of the country, quickly recognizing the signs of heat stroke and knowing how to treat it could save your dog’s life.
Heat stroke occurs when your dog can no longer maintain his normal body temperature (around 101F) by panting. Humidity and heat combine to increase his temperature and at 106F his internal organs start to break down. At that point, you only have minutes to cool him or he could suffer permanent organ damage or even die.
Often people don’t recognize the symptoms of heat stroke and lose critical treatment time. Very humid days – even if it’s not all that hot – can also be problematic, so always watch your dog for these signs:
Time is of the essence if your dog is experiencing heat stoke. Don’t panic and follow these steps:
Something as unique as your dog’s temperament can elevate his body temperature. For example, a pet that is anxious, excited or frightened, or one that barks excessively, is more likely to get heat stroke than one that is calm or quiet. Also, dogs with short noses, like Pugs, Bulldogs, and Shar-Pei are more likely to have heat-related problems, because they have less tongue area to dissipate heat. Other factors that can play a part in heat stoke are:
Of course, an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure – so here are some ways to avoid heat stoke:
It’s disappointing to have our plans thwarted by the weather – but no activity is worth risking the boy’s health. We’ll see as much of Austin as we can in the mornings and evenings – afternoons will be spent in the air conditioning. We can catch up on work while the boys get their much-needed beauty rest.
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