Pets and the Summer Heat

The heat can be just as uncomfortable to pets as it is to people. When temperatures outside get into the upper 90's and triple digits, it becomes important to monitor the health of your pets closely while outdoors.

"If they're breathing really, really hot air, then there's not a way to exchange that air and cool themselves and so their body just starts to overheat. Their body temperature goes up, and that's when we start to see the problems," says Dr. Kirk Holland, veterinarian.

Other ways to keep your pets safe is to avoid putting them into situations where they have no means of escaping from the heat.

Chief Animal Service Officer Renee Skipper said, "Never leave your animal in a vehicle because it's just way too hot. It's hotter in a vehicle then it is outside."

When it comes to dogs, certain types of dogs are more susceptible to the heat then others.

"A lot of times they have trouble with the heat because their nose is smushed, so-to-speak; it's shorter, and so they don't have the ability to cool the air and they're also usually the ones that are not used to being in the heat. So if they accidentally get left out or heaven forbid somebody keeps them in the car while they run into the grocery store and, you know, don't leave the car running and don't leave the air conditioning on or something like that, those are the ones that usually have a lot of trouble,” said Dr. Holland.

If your pet is naturally an outdoor animal, there are ways to protect them.

When the heat is on during the summertime, there are certain things you want to do to keep your pet safe. One of which is to give them plenty of shelter from the sunlight. Another of which is to give them lots and lots of water.

Fans are also good to help with good airflow for the animals, since their primary means of cooling themselves is by panting.

As the summer rolls in and 90's dominate the daytime temperatures, remember that your pets need cool air just as much as we do.

Pet owners should never leave their dogs in the car where temperatures can easily get up to more than 110 degrees.

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