MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCBD) – With hot summer temperatures settling into the region this week, it’s important to know the signs of heatstroke in dogs.
Heatstroke can be seen in all breeds of all ages, but it’s more likely in long-haired and short-nosed breeds, as well as younger and older dogs.
First, what is heat stroke? Sometimes referred to as heat exhaustion, it’s a form of hyperthermia that occurs when heat-dissipating mechanisms of the body cannot accommodate excessive heat.
According to the American Kennel Club, body temperatures above 105F are suggestive of heat stroke.
Some signs your pet may be experiencing heatstroke may include panting, salivation, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness, listlessness, poor coordination, shaking, collapse, and seizures.
Remember, if you are hot, so is your dogs. Watch your pet and do not let them exercise or play hard on hot, humid days.
What should you do if your dog is experiencing heatstroke? Remove them from the heat source and seek shade or air conditioning.
Cool your dog with water, but not iced water – perhaps by spraying them with a hose. You can also submerge then in a bath or pool if its safe to do so or drape a wet towel on them and use a fan.
Check their rectal temperature every 10-15 minutes and stop cooling if the temperature drops below 103F, remember, dogs’ normal temp is 101.5F.
Offer the dog a drink of water, but don’t force them to drink.
The American Kennel Club says dogs can best acclimate to high temperatures if provided good air circulation, shade and access to fresh water.
Immediately take your dog to your veterinarian as soon as the temperature reaches 103F or if you are unable to reduce the temperature significantly.