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Preventing Heatstroke in Pets

Hot summer days mean spending time outdoors with your dog, but it also can pose some risks. Dogs can easily overheat when exposed to high outdoor temperatures without resources to help them cool down. Here are some tips to enjoy a hot day outside while staying cool:

  • Always carry water with you wherever you go! A doggy water bottle, or a collapsible bowl work great. For longer trips/days out, fill an old milk jug or juice jar with water from home before leaving, so your pup has clean drinking water all day.

  • Fill a spray bottle with water so that you can mist your dog’s body while out in the heat.

  • Have extra rags handy that can be soaked in water to drape over the dog if you need a quick cool-down.

  • Buy a doggy pool or kiddie pool for your dog to play or swim in for some summer fun!

  • Look at purchasing a cooling mat or bandana product to help with longer cooling times.

  • Make frozen treats from broth, wet food, pumpkin, or water (lots of options!).

  • Play with the hose outside!

If you have a Brachycephalic dog (a short snout/smush-face dog), limit their time and restrict their activity outdoors. These dogs cannot handle heat as easily as most, and are more susceptible to breathing problems and overheating. If your Brachy dog is older, it might be a good idea to get a pet stroller for them, so they can still travel and go on walks without having to exert more energy in the heat.

Here are tips from MedVet to help identify signs of heatstroke in your dog. If you see these signs, get your dog into shade or air conditioning asap to get them cooled down. Offer drinking water, and use wet rags or towels to help cool their body. If you can’t get your dog cooled down, call your vet immediately to prevent any permanent damage. Heatstroke is preventable and knowing the signs is the first step! Stay cool out there. 😎


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