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  • Writer's pictureGardens Animal Hospital

Hot weather safety tips for your pet

· Pets can become dehydrated quickly, be sure they have access to plenty of fresh, clean water.

· Do not over-exercise your pet outside. Keep them indoors as much as possible.

· Know the symptoms of overheating in pets, which include excessive panting or difficulty breathing, increased heart and respiratory rate, drooling, mild weakness, stupor or even collapse. Symptoms can also include seizures, bloody diarrhea and vomit along with an elevated body temperature of over 104 degrees.

· Animals with flat faces, like Pugs, Bulldogs and Persian cats, are more susceptible to heat stroke since they cannot pant as effectively. These pets, along with the elderly, the overweight, and those with heart or lung diseases, should be kept cool in air-conditioned rooms as much as possible. Do not take them to the beach. The sand at the beach can reach temperatures above 130 degrees.

· Never leave your pets alone in a parked vehicle. Not only can it lead to fatal heat stroke, it is illegal in Florida.

· When the temperature is very high, don’t let your dog linger on hot asphalt. Being so close to the ground, your pooch’s body can heat up quickly, and sensitive paw pads can burn. Keep walks during these times to a minimum. If the asphalt or pavement is too hot for your bare skin it’s too hot for your pets’ feet.

· Haircuts. If you have a pet with a thick coat, consider a haircut! One inch is a good length to avoid sunburn (yes, pets can get sunburns too!) and also keep your pet cool. We offer shedless treatments the remove a lot of that thick undercoat and loose hair to help keep your pet cool.

And perhaps most important, pay attention to your dog and cat – you’ll know when they seem uncomfortable or like they might be in some trouble. Summer can be a great time to spend with your dog or cat, but it’s important to keep these tips in mind as the days grow hotter and longer!

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