The heat of Florida is great for the beach, but it has serious drawbacks as well – especially when it comes to your friends on four legs. Pets are extremely susceptible to heat-related health problems and illnesses, which makes it your responsibility to take precautionary measures to protect your dog or cat through the hottest months of the year. The following tips will help you and your furry friend enjoy a safe and comfortable summer.
Never Leave Your Dog Alone in the Car
Just like you wouldn’t leave your baby alone in a hot car, you should never leave your dog. A car sitting in the sun acts like a pressure cooker. It can easily become up to 40 degrees warmer than the outside air in mere minutes. Even if you are only running into the gas station for a soda, leaving your dog in the car isn’t safe. Only travel with your dog if you know that he will be able to join you for all of your errands.
Keep Your Dog Hydrated
Giving your dog consistent access to cool, clean water is the single best way to keep him hydrated and help ward off symptoms of heat stroke and dehydration. After all, the heat of the Florida sun and the humidity in the air leave your pup feeling parched after just a few minutes. All you need to do is keep his water bowl easily accessible and filled.
On seriously hot days, be sure to remain alert for any signs of dehydration like lethargy, sunken eyes, and tacky gums. Mild cases of dehydration can be resolved by giving your dog small amounts of water over the span of a few hours, but severe cases will require the attention of a vet.
Review the Signs of Heat Stroke
It is critical to remember that your dog cannot sweat to release heat. Instead, he has to pant to cool down. This is a relatively inefficient method that can lead to heat stroke if your dog spends too long outside or without water. Learn to recognize signs of heat stroke so that you are prepared to seek veterinary attention immediately. Symptoms of heat stroke include salivating, staggering, extreme panting, vomiting, and even diarrhea.
Of course, you also want to provide ample shade for your dog while outside and avoid bringing your pet outside during the hottest times of day. To ensure that your pup is at his happiest and healthiest, contact the Affordable Pet Hospital in Tampa, Florida to make an appointment. The caring and knowledgeable staff at Affordable Pet Hospital provides emergency medical and surgical care, wellness plans, and so much more. Call today at (813) 991-9898.