overheating

Water (Hydration)

Take water and keep your dog hydrated.

Dehydration / Overheating (Get Medical Help)


By Dr. Becker

“On an 85-degree day it takes only 10 minutes for the interior of your parked car to climb to 102 degrees. In a half hour, it can reach 120 degrees. And leaving windows partially open doesn't drop the temperature inside the vehicle. Keep in mind your dog has a higher body temp than you do and she can't cool down as efficiently as you do, either.

Some dogs are at higher risk for heat-related illness than others, including brachycephalic breeds (dogs with flat faces and short noses), older dogs, puppies, dogs that are ill or have a chronic health condition, dogs not used to warm weather, any dog left outside in hot weather, and dogs that are allowed to overexert themselves in the heat.

If you think your pet or any dog is experiencing heatstroke, you should take immediate action and move him to a cool area, preferably with air conditioning. At a minimum you should move him to a shady spot. Next, try to determine his condition. If he's standing, or if he's at least conscious and panting, offer him small amounts of water to drink and take his temperature if possible.”

“If his temp is 104ºF or lower, remain with him in a cool environment, watch him carefully and keep offering small drinks of water. A large volume of water all at once might cause him to vomit, which will add to the risk of dehydration. When he seems more comfortable, call your veterinarian for next steps. The vet may want to evaluate your dog even if he seems fully recovered.”

“If the dog is unable to stand on his own, is unresponsive to your voice, touch or the sight of you, or is having seizures, check for breathing and a heartbeat. At the same time, have someone contact a veterinary hospital (or make the call yourself if you're alone with your pet) to let them know you'll be bringing him in right away. It's important to alert the clinic you're on the way so they can prepare for your arrival.”

“Begin cooling your dog down by soaking his body with cool water – cool, but not cold. Use a hose, wet towels or any other source of cool water that is available. Take his temperature if possible. Concentrate the cooling water on his head, neck and in the areas underneath the front and back legs.”

“Carefully cool the tongue if possible, but don't let water run into the throat as it could get into the lungs. Never put water in the mouth of a dog that can't swallow on his own. Put a fan on him if possible — it will speed up the cooling process.”

“After a few minutes, re-check his temperature. If it's at or below 104ºF, stop the cooling process. Further cooling could lead to blood clotting or a too-low body temperature. Get the dog to a veterinary clinic right away, even if he seems to be recovering.”