The temperatures are climbing this week, and it is not only humans who can be brought to suffer from hot weather and heatwaves. These can even be more painful for our cats and our dogs, because of their coat as well as other physiological characteristics. Unlike us, these animals do not sweat much and have a harder time ventilating themselves.
Here are some tips that can help protect them better:
Leave your dogs indoors
Unlike humans, dogs can only cool by panting and sweating by their pads. High temperatures can cause heat stroke or permanent sequelae and even be fatal. Give them the opportunity to put themselves on cool ground and have access to a sufficiently cool and airy space as well as free access to water . You can also consider brushing them to remove their undercoat and increase the share of wet foods.
Provide water and shade
If the animals must be left outside, they must be given plenty of water (they must be able to hydrate often and easily) and sufficient shade , while taking into account the movement of the sun. Even short periods of direct exposure to the sun can have serious consequences for their health.
Walk, do not run
When it’s very hot and humid, never have your dog exercise by running it next to your bike or taking it running with you . Wanting to please you, the dog will collapse before giving up, and it may be too late to save him. Ride your dog at the coolest hours of the day, early in the morning or later in the evening .
Take care of the sun-exposed soil
Remember that when it’s hot, the tar can heat up to between 55 and 80 degrees, which is enough to seriously burn the legs of an animal. If the tar feels warm to the touch, it can cause painful burns to your dog’s pads and even damage them permanently. Favor the grass and avoid hot soil if possible, or wait until they refresh to walk your companion .
Provide water and freshness on long car trips
Drive with your companions, roll open windows or use the air conditioning , without abusing it, to avoid thermal shock. On long trips, stop often to get fresh air and give water to your pet .Never leave an animal in a car parked in hot weather
Every summer many animals suffer and die when they are carelessly left in a car – even parked in the shade, the windows ajar, and even if it’s only for a moment . A dog locked in a parked car can die from heat stroke in minutes, even when the car is not parked in the sun.
When it’s 26 degrees, the temperature inside a car in the shade can be 32 degrees , and the inside of a car parked in the sun can reach 70 degrees in just minutes. Dogs can die quickly if their body temperature exceeds 41 degrees. This puts their liver and their ability to control their muscles at risk, their brains can be irreversibly damaged and their hearts can stop beating. This is a terrifying and extremely painful way to die.
To put this warning in the picture, the Italian actress Elisabetta Canalis takes the place of a dog left alone in a car during a heat in this hot clip of PETA.
How to help a dog trapped in a car in hot weather
If you see a distressed dog in a car, take a look at the vehicle model and color, as well as the license plate number and call the police, then try to find the owner of the car if possible. Make sure someone keeps an eye on the animal to assess the urgency of the situation.
If the police do not intervene or do not arrive in time and the dog’s life seems to be in imminent danger, surround yourself with one or more witnesses who can confirm your assessment of the situation, then undertake to release the animal suffering from the vehicle, carry it in the shade and wait for the arrival of the police.
Symptoms of heatstroke and how to fix it
Any dog with one or more symptoms of heatstroke – agitation, rapid or painful panting, vomiting, lethargic state, lack of appetite or coordination – needs urgent care, his life can switch in minutes. You can try to cool it by putting water in it and applying a wet and cold towel to the head and chest, or by gradually immersing it in warm water (never frozen). Then quickly drive the animal to a veterinarian.