Tails from Ralston Vet

June 10, 2016

Watch Out for the Rays

Filed under: Omaha Veterinary,Veterinary Care — Ralston Vet @ 12:19 pm
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“His temp is reaching 108 F.”  Veterinarian giving instructions states “Alright team lets get this going.  Start cooling him off with water and keep checking that thermometer. It’s important to bring down his temperature, but not too fast.”

The dog above is in a critical state. The pet is suffering from heat stroke. Are you curious as to how this happened? Let me explain a few reasons that heat stroke can happen to your baby and at any given moment cause a life threatening situation. Keep in mind, on average a cat or dogs temperature is 101-102 degrees F.

There are a few things to be mindful of when the warmth starts to peak.

  1. Long walks – If it is even 75 degrees outside and your pet is out on an extremely long walk or run your pet can become overheated.
  2. Brachycephalic breeds – short nose dogs tend to overheat and become stressed in shorter amounts of time outside even in cooler weather.
  3. Camping or fishing – Watch leaving your pet with you outside for long periods of times
  4. Bathroom breaks – When it’s hot outside allow them to do what they need and come inside.

bentley o melissaA pet being in the heat is comparable to you being in the heat plus a thick winter coat on. A pet does not sweat. If you suspect your pet is overheating then you need to use cool water to coat over your pet’s fur and feet. This mimics sweating because allows the heat to escape the body. Do not use ice cold water as you can drop the temperature too fast and cause the pet to go into shock. Ice cold water restricts the blood vessels and sends all the hot blood rushing towards the heart. Though it can be annoying, your pet’s panting is important for them in the cooling off process.

Heat stroke causes deaths more often than not. If you are afraid your pet is experiencing heat stroke call us immediately. Signs to watch for include: collapsing, lethargy, heavy panting, trouble breathing and not moving. Typically indicated after being outside for any length of time.

Nicole Mathis

Ralston Vet



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