If you have a Dog……….
Dogs are not very good at keeping themselves cool so they will need your help. Ensure they have plenty of water, whether they are in the house or out on a walk. If you are at home keep the water in a heavy bowl so it can’t be easily knocked over
Don’t keep your dog in a car. You may think it’s ok to do this as you are leaving the window open, however, it’s not enough to keep the car cool. According to the RSPCA if it’s 22C outside, within an hour it can be 47C inside the car. Dogs die this way every year, please don’t let this happen to your dog.
Take your dog for a walk at cooler times of the day. Go in the morning and the evening instead.
If your dog is outside all day make sure there is plenty of shade as well as lots of water.
Regularly groom your dog. If you have a long haired breed, have the hair trimmed to help keep it cool.
Do you know the signs of heatstroke? Here is a checklist of what to look out for. Heavy panting, very red gums/tongue, excessive salivation, a rapid pulse, lack of co-ordination, lethargy, reluctance or inability to rise after collapsing, vomiting, diarrhoea and in extreme cases loss of consciousness. If you see your dog displaying any of these symptoms ensure you take immediate action. Try to cool your dog down gradually as heatstroke can be fatal. Douse your dog in cool water (not cold or iced water) and let it drink small amounts of cool water (again not cold or iced) until their breathing is more normal. Then take your dog to the vets to be checked to make sure everything is ok.
If you have a cat……….
Cats love the warm weather and are a lot better at keeping themselves cool. However, if it is excessively hot here are a few things you can do.
If you have a cat that likes to go outside, try not to let it out between 10am and 3pm so it avoids the hottest times of the day. If they are indoor cats keep blinds shut and curtains closed as this helps to keep the house cool.
Make sure your cat has access to plenty of water.
If you notice your cat is sleeping more it’s probably nothing to worry about. Cats are sensible and will nap more on a hot dayrather than spend their time running around. Maybe they are the more intelligent than dogs?
Pay attention to your cat’s feet. Cats and dogs have sweat glands in their paws. If you notice your cat is leaving wet paw prints it will need to have more water to replenish its fluids. You could try cooling your cat down by dipping its paws in water but it may not be pleased with you doing that.
If you see your cat panting, it doesn’t automatically mean it has heatstroke. Cats do pant but they rarely do it. However, if you think your cat is panting excessively check for other signs of heatstroke and take immediate action.
If you have a small furry pet……….
As always, make sure they have access to lots of clean water
Make sure you keep them clean. When the weather is hot it results in more flies and maggots. This can lead to flystrike. This can fatally affect rabbits.
Keep your pet groomed and if it’s a long haired breed, have it trimmed to help keep it cool.
Keep hutches in the shade. It may mean you have to move it around during the day of you don’t have a permanently shaded spot. Make sure the hutch is off the ground as this improves ventilation and can help to keep it cool.
Give small animals food that contains lots of water such as celery and apple. This will help keep them hydrated.
Spraying a water mist on larger animals such as rabbits is a good way to keep them cool. Remember not to spray them in the face as they will not like it.
There are many other ways to keep your pet cool and a lot of them are common sense. A good way to look at it is if you are uncomfortable because of the heat there is a good chance your pet will be too. If you need any extra information and advice please contact us and we will be happy to have a chat.