Help Your Pet Beat the Heat

By: Muriel Bailey Email
By: Muriel Bailey Email

For most dogs, it's a daily routine and something they expect rain or shine.
But with temperatures rising, you may have to add a slight adjustment to their schedule.

"Choose times of the day that are the coolest for you, which is typically early morning or late evening," said Dr. Brad Harris.

And even though you pick the coolest time of the day there's still something else you can do.

"Shorten those walks up," added Harris.

Dr. Harris is a veterinarian at the Dothan Animal Hospital.
He says so far this summer he's only dealt with one case of heat exhaustion.
One of the most obvious signs to look out for is panting.

"It becomes extreme, it becomes noisy," explained Harris.

In that case the best way to cool your dog down is a water bath.

"If you're outside and you're using a water hose just start hosing them down," added Harris.

Although they're used to being outside in the heat, you still have to keep them safe.

"Shade, water and preferably a fan."

Heat exhaustion can lead to long-term health problems and even death.

"It's not a good feeling when you realize it's not a good situation that maybe could have been prevented and it makes a lot of pet owners feel bad."

Dr. Harris says the number one thing he emphasizes to his clients is prevention.

If your dog has a thick coat, you can also cut their hair to help keep them cool.
And of course you shouldn't leave them in the car.

If you have an indoor cat or dog, and you don't want to leave the a-c on, you can open a window or leave a fan on.

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