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How to protect our pets from heatstroke

Posted 13th Jun 2021

How to protect our pets from heatstroke



You might have noticed that you’ve never really seen your pet sweat. Dogs and cats do have sweat glands but very few in comparison to humans. This means that when they get warm it’s much harder for them to cool down again.


What is heatstroke?

Heatstroke (heat exhaustion or overheating) is when your pet gets too hot. It’s a serious medical issue and they need treatment as soon as possible.


Which pets get heatstroke?

All pets are at risk of getting heatstroke, but some more than others. Including, animals with short noses, lots of thick fur, older pets, very young pets, pets on the larger side and pets with underlying health problems.


What can we do to prevent heatstroke?

As an owner, it is your responsibility to help your pet stay at a comfortable temperature. To help avoid heatstroke you need to:

-Keep them in cool places during the hottest parts of the day

-Allow them access to constant fresh, and cool, water

-Make sure they have adequate exercise in the cooler parts of the day

-If you’re able to, trim your pet through the hotter months to allow them to cool off easier



What are the signs of heatstroke?

The signs of heatstroke include your pet in excessive distress, heavily panting and dribbling. They may also vomit and appear drowsy without the ability to fully focus.


What do you do if you think your pet has heatstroke?

Give them water but don’t force them to drink. Use cool water on their body to reduce their temperature but ensure this isn’t ice cold as you don’t want to shock their body any further, your intention is to gradually reduce their temperature. You can also use other tools like fans to circulate cool air around them which will help maintain a cooler environment. Another way to keep things cool and calm is to make things dark, reducing the room temperature and calming your pet from this heightened state.

When they’re breathing begins to stabilise, take them to the vet. (Get someone to cool the car down before you put your pet in it!)


What to do after your pet has had heatstroke?

If your pet has had the all clear from your vet, they’ll be exhausted. For the next few days your vet will have advised you to keep them cool and calm to make sure no other damage is done.


Heatstroke is avoidable by taking extra care of your pets during the hotter parts of the year. Your first thought might be that the car is the worst place (which is correct!) and that leaving them at home is a better option, but don’t forget that conservatories also provide environments that are too hot for your pet. Conservatories will radiate heat through the house as well, so it’s best to keep the doors closed so your pets aren’t affected by it. If you’re on holiday and decide to pop out, your caravan will do the same as your car. If you can, leave someone with your pet if you have to leave or ensure the place in which you leave them will remain cool for the duration you aren’t able to supervise them.


Need some extra help keeping your pets cool? You can also check out our Ancol Cooling Products here!

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