Watch out for Heat

Happy Mother’s Day to the moms and their families out there! Considering the beautiful weekend and warmer temperatures, I have started digging into a few of the hazards of the heat. Last week we chatted about what happens to your pet’s body when they cannot handle increasing temperatures and this week we will review some of the factors and situations you need to watch for.

  1. Over the past several weeks we discussed how breed and behavior have a minimal connection, but when it comes to heat, breed is a big player. Dogs with shorter noses (the snoring type) and flatter faces, such as English Bull Dogs, Shih Tzus and more, are known as brachycephalic breeds. Brachycephalic breeds struggle to expend heat through panting and can overheat very quickly at moderate temperatures.
  2. Weight and hair coat. Some dogs with heavier hair coats can struggle to expend heat and cool their bodies. Dogs that carry around extra weight are also predisposed to heating up faster and struggling to cool down.
  3. Dogs that are older or younger are more likely to suffer from heat stroke and less likely to recover from it.
  4. Medical conditions and certain medications. Dogs with cardiac conditions, circulatory problems or any condition of the airway can struggle to expend excess heat and are very prone to heat stroke. Medications for these conditions and many others can also make your pets more susceptible to heat stroke.

Before the summer heats up, make sure to check with your veterinarian if your pet’s medications may put him or her at risk. Consider a summer haircut for pet and look out for those warmer days. Check out next week’s article for tips and tricks to avoid heat stroke in your pets.

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