Summer is going strong in South Africa, and the days continue to heat up. As unbearable as the warm weather is for us, it is just as bad for our furry four-legged friends.
If you plan on taking your dog out for some exercise, it’s important to make sure they stay hydrated and avoid getting heat stroke.
On January 3, Parkscape shared a Cape Town resident’s warning that two dogs had to be rescued after collapsing from overheating on Table Mountain.
Symptoms of heat stroke include:
– Panting, which increases as heat stroke progresses
– Drooling, salivating
– Agitation, restlessness
– Very red or pale gums
– Bright red tongue
– Increased heart rate
– Breathing distress
– Vomiting or diarrhoea
– Dizziness, staggering
– Lethargy, weakness
– Muscle tremors
– Collapsing and lying down
Dogs that are more prone to heat stroke include those with short snouts, fat or big-muscled dogs, long-haired breeds, old and young dogs, as well as dogs with certain diseases or on certain medication.
If your dog is suffering from heat stroke, make sure to move them out of the heat and the direct sun immediately. Cool them down by placing cool wet washcloths on their footpads and around their head. Never use ice water or ice as the extreme cold may cause their blood vessels to restrict and cause their internal temperature to rise.
Make sure to take your dog to the nearest vet to get checked out, even if they appear to have recovered as there may be internal damage.