Heat stroke or Heat Exhaustion in dogs
Heat stroke in dogs occurs when their body temperature rises to dangerous levels, usually as a result of exposure to high temperatures or humidity. Symptoms of heat stroke in dogs can include panting, dehydration, excessive drooling, rapid heart rate, lethargy, vomiting, and collapse.
If you suspect your dog is suffering from heat stroke, you should immediately move them to a cool, shaded area, and provide them with plenty of fresh water to drink. You can also apply cool (not cold) water to their fur and skin to help bring their body temperature down.
Heat stroke is a serious condition that requires prompt veterinary attention. Without treatment, it can lead to organ damage or even death. To prevent heat stroke, it's important to keep your dog well-hydrated, avoid exercising them in extreme heat or humidity, and never leave them in a hot car.
Heat stroke in dogs, otherwise called hyperthermia, occurs when their body temperature exceeds 103°F (39.4°C). Exposure to excessive external or environmental heat causes heatstroke in dogs.
Too much heat leads to organ failure and can actually kill your Fido even before you provide them with the first aid. As a pet owner, you should take care of your fur baby when he/she is out in the summer for an extended period.
How Heat stroke in dogs occurs?
There are several reasons why a dog's body temperature can rise to dangerous levels, including:
1. High environmental temperatures - Dogs are susceptible to heatstroke when exposed to high temperatures, especially when the humidity is high.
2. Physical exertion - Dogs that engage in excessive physical activity, such as running or playing in the heat, are at risk of heatstroke.
3. Poor ventilation - Dogs left in an enclosed area without proper ventilation, such as a parked car or a small room, can suffer from heatstroke.
4.Certain medical conditions - Dogs with underlying medical conditions, such as heart or respiratory diseases, may be more susceptible to heatstroke.
5. Breed - Some dog breeds are more susceptible to heatstroke than others. Brachycephalic breeds, such as Bulldogs, Pugs, and Boxers, are at higher risk due to their short snouts, which can make it difficult for them to breathe.
Possibility of Heat stroke
The main reason for this is, they can't sweat off, so panting delivers an instant exchange of outside air. This reciprocity keeps your Dog's temperature normal. Sometimes when the outside air comes the same or greater than that of your pet's temperature, then there's a possibility of Heat stroke.
Don't take a walk during Summer
You might be playing or walking with your dog outside, and in most cases, you may not feel overheated on a warm sunny day, but your Dog's body temperature could be rising.
Do not leave your Pet alone
Not only the direct sun exposure but also Dogs left in RV's and Cars with or without the windows shut is one of the leading causes of sunstroke in dogs.
Symptoms of Heat stroke in dogs
Heatstroke is a medical emergency that can be life-threatening. Symptoms can vary, but some common signs and symptoms of heatstroke include:
1. High body temperature: The body temperature is 104°F or higher.
2. Rapid heart rate: The heart rate is higher than normal.
3. Rapid breathing: The breathing rate is faster than normal.
4. Altered mental state: The dog may appear confused, delirious, or even unconscious.
5. Dry skin: The skin may be dry and hot to the touch.
6. Headache: The dog may have a headache, dizziness, or lightheadedness.
7. Nausea and vomiting: The dog may feel nauseous and may vomit.
8. Muscle cramps: The dog may have muscle cramps or weakness.
9. Seizures: The dog may have seizures.
10. Loss of consciousness: The dog may lose consciousness.
If your dog or someone else dog is experiencing symptoms of heatstroke, seek medical attention immediately. It is essential to move the dog to a cooler environment, provide cool water to drink, and cool them with cold compresses or ice packs while waiting for medical help.
Signs of Heat stroke in dogs
Signs of a light Heat stroke are a body temperature of 104 to 106 degrees. Sometimes excessive panting and other signs of discomfort show overheating in dogs. Bright red gums and thick saliva are the other common signs. When your fur kid’s temperature rises above 106ºF, there are chances for his gums to become pale, act dizzy, bleed from the nose, dehydration, vomit, and even have diarrhea.
Some of the commonly seen and important heat stroke symptoms in dogs are,
Excessive panting is the primary sign of Heat stroke. It's how a dog cools down his/her body temperature.
2. Excessive Drooling
Other than panting, creating excess saliva helps your dog deal with heat better.
3. Needing frequent breaks and inactive
If your Dog shows this sign, then it's clear that your dog feels the effects of heat.
4. The rise in body temperature
You need to check this and confirm that your Dog's body temperature is not above 103°F or 39°C and make sure he/she is healthy.
5. Irregular heartbeat
Your Dog could be overheating if you see this sign. If your fur baby is experiencing it, take them to a vet immediately.
6. Dullness or Loss of Consciousness
Your fur baby looks dull and inactive for a long time lying somewhere. You'll think it is tired, but the actual reason might be different.
7. Walking drunk
If you see them walking with a loss of balance, give plenty of water and take them to a vet with no further delay.
Treatment of Heat stroke in dogs
You must bring your Dog's body temperature down to 102°F or less, which is the most crucial part than rushing the pet to the emergency clinic. But if the condition is severe, then they need veterinaryattention.
Some of the common first aid methods for heatstroke in dogs are:
1.Lay them down on a wet towel or a pack of ice.
2. Add more ice cubes to their water
3. Use a shade screen or let them lie in the shade
4. Give them a cool bath, not too cold.
5. Bring your dog into an airy space and turn on the fan.
6. Offer ice cubes to lick or energy drinks to drink.
7. Wrap him/her in cold wet towels for some time.
8. Soak the pet in cold water from the hose.
Prevention of Heat stroke in dogs
There are numerous amount of preventive measures to avoid heatstroke. Some of the commonly followed methods are providing enough water and avoid spending time outdoors when temperatures rise. Do not let your Dog go out when you feel hot and humid outside; if not, provide shaded areas. But most times, these common prevention methods are not enough to save your Fido from heat.
Follow these guidelines to prevent Heat stroke
1. Providing access to water anytime is the most important thing.
2. Feed them summer foods that can keep their body cool and appropriate for a hot climate.
3. Keep your dog indoors during the summer months or at extreme temperatures.
4. Use a Pet Monitor to check the temperature anytime and get alerts.
5. Carry additional bottles of drinking and splashing water.
6. Do not cage your Dog outdoors without enough shade and water.
7. Avoid playing or exercising with your Dog outdoors and other outside activities when the temperature is at its extreme or in the summer months.
8. Never leave your Dog in rooms with poor ventilation.
9. Avoid leaving your Dog in a Car/RV without adequate shade and water.
10. Plan exercises and other outdoor activities when the outside temperature is cool.
11. Wetting down your Dog in regular intervals with cool water is a great idea.
Use Technology the Smart Way
Like most health-related problems, heat stroke in dogs can also be avoided with the help of ever-growing technology. If you are a pet traveler or a dog parent at home, you may take advantage of pet protection monitors that constantly monitor your Dog's environmental temperature. They send alerts to your mobile/email when your doggo's surroundings or room temperature goes above or below the range you set. This is a real lifesaver as it helps you save pets or dogs from heat stroke and frostbite.