Keeping Cats and Dogs healthy in Hot Weather
Combined research from the ASPCA and the Pet Health Network offers outstanding information that will help you keep your cats and dogs healthy and safe during hot weather.
Whether this subject matter is common sense or knew knowledge, pet owners should take the time to read this for the health and safety of their cats and dogs (ASPCA, n.d.).
Dangerous Health Issues for Dogs and Cats in Hot Weather
- Dehydration: Dogs sweat through their paws and stay cool by panting.
- Overheating: Dogs and cats can overheat by stepping on hot surfaces; Dogs and cats with flat faces are more susceptible to heatstroke because they cannot pant sufficiently (ASPCA, n.d.); Elderly, overweight, and pets with heart or lung disease are also more likely to suffer heatstroke and dehydration (ASPCA, n.d.; Pet Health Network, n.d.)
Signs of Heat-Related Health Problems in Cats and Dogs
- Excessive panting, increased respiratory and heart rates, breathing struggles, drooling, lethargy, and seizure activity.
- Additional symptoms may include vomiting, bloody diarrhea, and temperature over 104 degrees (ASPCA, n.d.)
Promoting Pet Health and Safety in Hot Weather
- Minimize time in the outdoors
- Do not leave a pet in a car
- Avoid paws from touching hot pavements. Walk pets on cooler surfaces such as grass (Loreno, 2018).
- If outside, provide pets with shaded areas
- Keep pets in air-conditioned areas as much as possible
- Be sure that pets have access to plenty of fresh cool water
- Should you choose to shorten your pet’s hair, never shave, just cut short to avoid sunburned skin (ASPCA, n.d.; Pet Health Network, n.d.)
- Let pets swim in cool water if they like that activity but be mindful to use safety gear if need be and do not allow pets to drink chlorinated pool water. Rinse pets off with fresh water once out of the pool.
- Avoid too much activity
- Be mindful of any unusual behaviors
- Don’t forget to maintain regular veterinary visits (ASPCA, n.d.)
Have a fun and safe summer with your four-legged furry family members.
ASPCA (n.d.). Hot Weather Safety Tips. https://www.aspca.org/pet-care/general-pet-care/hot-weather-safety-tips
Loreno, D. (2018). Protect those paws: A guide to keeping your four-foots safe during the heatwave
Pet Health Network (n.d.) Seven Summer Cat and Dog Safety Tips. IDEXX. http://www.pethealthnetwork.com/seven-summer-cat-and-dog-safety-tips