Dog Heat Stroke - Signs, Treatment, And Prevention
It’s mid-July, and as the majority of the country is aware, it’s hot out! In fact, this is perhaps the most intense heat wave in the United States dating back to 1995. Weather experts have partnered with popular media to inform the public of the dangerous temperatures that are gripping the nation. One group of residents that are at risk during the mercury’s dangerous rise to the top of the thermometer are often forgotten, however…dogs.
When given as directed, IntelliLyte Electrolytes for Dogs provides essential fluids, electrolytes, energy, select vitamins and amino acids to re-hydrate, re-energize and maximize performance.
Did you know that dogs do not sweat through their skin as people do? It’s true. Dogs are often much more active than their human companions regardless of weather conditions. Let’s face it, they would like to go outside any chance they can get (including during a heat wave). During times of high heat, dogs are at risk for heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
5 Signs that Your Dog is Having Heat Stroke
1. If your dog’s rectal temperature is over 104, you need to take immediate action. Although normal temperatures for a dog can range between 100.5 and 102.5, a reading of 104 means your dog may be experiencing heat stroke. A reading of 106 indicates an extremely dire emergency…react quickly or your dog will suffer permanent damage or die.
2. Your dog is panting vigorously, and may look somewhat dazed, dizzy, or disoriented. If you have been walking or exercising the dog, they may want to lie down and be unwilling to get up.
3. Your dog may have deep, dark-red gums and it’s tongue is bright, rosy-red.
4. Your dog’s mouth may become extremely dry or sticky and they may appear to be trying to wet the tongue from within their own mouth by smacking their lips. This is due to the thickening of their saliva which is also an occasionally visible warning sign.
5. Your dog may begin to have seizures.
What if you Suspect Your Dog is Having Heat Stroke
If you are noticing the warning signs listed above and you suspect that your dog is having heat stroke, it is critical that you respond appropriately. Here are some actions you can take:
1. Get your dog out of the sun. Find a cool, shady space if at all possible, but if at all possible do not let the dog sit in the sun any longer…this will only make matters worse at this point.
2. If available, cool the dog with rags, washcloths, or any cloth-type material that has been saturated with cool water (not cold water – over-cooling can cause hypothermia which is also extremely dangerous to dogs). Areas to focus these efforts on would include the bottoms of the dogs feet as well as it’s head.
3. If possible, offer your dog some cool water…this will help reduce the dog’s internal temperature, but do not attempt to force them to drink.
4. Contact your veterinarian or animal emergency professional immediately!
What You Can Do to Prevent Your Dog from Having Heat Stroke
1. If you know that your dog will be enduring dangerous temperatures (especially prolonged or combined with exercise), pre-empt heat exhaustion and heat stroke by administering IntelliLyte electrolytes for dogs. When given as directed, IntelliLyte Electrolytes for Dogs provides essential fluids, electrolytes, energy, select vitamins and amino acids to re-hydrate, re-energize and maximize performance.
2. Never, ever, ever leave your dog in the car even on a warm day…cars are like ovens in the sense that temperatures do not remain constant, they build. Cars will get much warmer than the outside environment, and heat stroke can occur in a very short period of time.
3. If you plan to be outside with your dog, try to stay in the shade and remember to bring plenty of cool water for them.
By knowing the warning signs, how to respond, and how to prevent your dog from having heat stroke, you can be sure that your dog stays healthy and active throughout the heat wave as well as the rest of the summer months.