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Summer safety tips for your dog

The Pet Professionals - Summer safety tips for your dog

Summer is finally here and everybody is eager to make the most out of the long, sunny days with fun outdoor activities. To avoid unnecessary accidents, it's always a good idea to remind dog owners that it's important to protect their canine companions from the hot weather.

Humans are quite efficient at cooling their bodies because they are capable of sweating. Dogs lose body heat mainly through panting and they only have sweat glands in their foot pads and nose. Unfortunately dogs are less efficient at cooling themselves down and therefore a lot more susceptible to heat stroke.

Please make sure your dog has access to a cool shaded place that allows him or her to get away from the sun and plenty of fresh, clean water to drink at all times. Avoid walking your dog at the hottest time of the day. Not only this will prevent our canine friends from over-heating but it will also protect their paws from burning on hot road surfaces, pavements and sand.

Never leave your pet locked in the car!  A lot of people do not realise that even when it isn't that hot outside, the temperature inside a car can soar dangerously high in a very short amount of time. A dog can die of heat stroke in just 15 to 20 minutes! Dog owners should never leave their dog alone in the car, even if the windows were left open, even if the vehicle was parked in the shade and even if it's just for a few minutes. You may be unexpectedly delayed and those preventive measures are just not enough!

It is also important for dog owners to know the signs of heatstroke so they can act quickly: excessive panting or difficulty breathing, drooling, dark red gums, weakness, elevated body temperature, distress and collapse.

If you ever find a dog suffering from heat stroke remove the animal from the sun and try to cool it down. Use cool (but not cold or icy water) or wet cloths, offer small amounts of water at a time and as soon as possible take it to the vet.

Enjoy a wonderful summer with your family, friends and don't forget your pets!

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Published: 17 Jun 2014

Read the previous article: Strangles