Unknown to many, dogs are the most common victims of heatstroke. Heatstroke can be fatal. Our four-legged friends can suffer from it and die within minutes without proper measures and heat regulation.
Unlike humans, dogs do not have sweat glands. They can only pant and release heat through their paw pads and noses to keep cool. And in the scorching summer heat, that is not enough to contain the body heat that is isolated inside their bodies and covered by their thick coats.
Excessive drooling, panting and sudden collapse are symptoms of heat stroke. Wet his coat with cold water and call you the vet immediately when this happens.
Never leave dogs alone inside a car. A car can turn into an oven in minutes after turning off the air-conditioner. However short you think your trip outside may be, it is not a justification to leave your dog inside your car.
Especially in summer, always ensure that your dog has access to clean drinking water at all times. Carry a water bottle on your walks and walk your dog either in the early morning or late in the evening when the temperature is cooler. If the temperature is extremely hot, do mental exercises at home. Teach him new tricks and practice old commands to stimulate his brain.
Watch out for heavy panting or weakness. They might be signs of heatstroke. Watch out particularly for overweight dogs, older dogs, and dogs with short noses like pugs, boxers or the bull breeds. They can get heat stroke easily than others.
If the weather is too hot, the best prevention is to stay indoors. Their paws can burn on hot pavements. Get him booties if necessary. If going out, cover him with a shirt to prevent his skin from sunburn. Pale colored dogs are more susceptible to sunburn, especially on their ears and noses. Sun damage can lead to skin cancer.
Take your dog to a professional groomer to ensure his coat is tangle-free and keep flies and insects at bay.
Ensure your dog has a collar and your contact information on it in case you get separated and someone else finds him. Microchip him and keep details updated to make it easier for you to find him.
Take your dog for a swim if he likes swimming. But limit intervals to 10 minutes to rest or relieve himself. He should have proper training. Make sure to swim is in the cooler part of the day. Bring clean bottled drinking water for him as drinking salt water will make him unwell.
Watch him as he plays in the water. If he struggles in breathing after playing, vomits, bloats or looks pale, there is a high chance that he is a victim of water intoxication or salt water poisoning. Bathe him after a sea swims to remove excess water and salt sticking in his coat. This will irritate his skin after drying. If you suspect that he has inhaled water, take him to the vet immediately to avoid complications.