In order to properly protect your pet against the summer heat, you need to know what issues can arise, as well as how to recognise them.
If you've ever experienced heatstroke, you know how bad it feels, as well as how dangerous it can be. Unfortunately, our four-legged family members can also find themselves falling victim to this issue, so it's vital to know the signs.
If your pet is exhibiting any of the below symptoms, you need to help them cool off immediately, and contact your vet for further guidance.
- Difficulty breathing or breathing erratically
- Disorientation, fatigue or weakness
- Discolouration of the gums, generally to a shade of blue
- Excessive panting and/or thick drool
- Vomiting, diarrhoea, or collapsing
Distress and restlessness can also be signs of heatstroke, and are generally your early warning, so if something seems off with your furry friend, it's better to be safe than sorry.
Unlike humans, most dogs don't wear shoes when they leave the house. This leaves the sensitive skin on the bottom of their paws exposed to the elements and susceptible to burns from their environment.
Often also referred to as "pad burn", burnt paws can occur if your furry family member spends too long walking or standing on hot ground, and can sometimes happen instantly if the surface is hot enough.
Behavioural symptoms of burnt paws include limping, as well as biting or licking at their paws more than usual. You may also notice blisters or irritation of their pads, and, in extreme cases, parts of your four-legged friend's paws may be entirely missing.
Although it may seem odd that your furry family member can get sunburnt given, well, all that fur, it is still possible, especially if you have a lighter-coloured dog or cat.
Symptoms of sunburn present much the same in animals as they do in humans, and they can suffer the same complications, so be sure to keep your pet out of the sun when it's at its worst.
Equal to heatstroke in danger level, and generally accompanying it, dehydration can be a major concern for your pet.
Your four-legged friend will seem lethargic and gulp down any water offered if they are dehydrated, and you may notice that their mouth is rather dry.
If left untreated, dehydration can cause serious problems and even be fatal, so be sure to be on the lookout.