Protect your furry friend from a heat stroke
Summers can be hard on your four-legged friend. Here’s what you can do to help them beat the heat.
The summer season brings with it sumptuous mangoes, long days, lemonades and pool parties but it also brings days that are too hot to handle. While humans sweat, dogs eliminate heat from their bodies by panting. However, there are times when the temperature rises and panting isn’t enough. This is when a dog’s body temperature rises too, and they can experience a heat stroke, which can become fatal if not treated immediately.
Causes of a heat stroke and what pet parents can do
A pet owner must take extra care of their dog during the summer season. Never leave your dog in a car or forget to provide water and shade when they are outdoors. “Take care of your pets this summer season by adding water-rich food to their diet. Fruits like watermelon, muskmelon, apple, orange and chikoo are great for them. Make sure you deseed these fruits. Veggies like cucumber will also benefit them. Include lots of yogurt, buttermilk and coconut water. Make sure your pets have access to fresh and cool water at all times during the day. You can also feed vanilla ice cream, once in a while,” says Anushka Iyer, Founder and CEO at pet care brand Wiggles.
Some dogs are more prone to heat stroke than others. For example, dogs with short noses, thick fur and those suffering from medical conditions are vulnerable to heatstroke.
Know when your pet is suffering from a heat stroke
Heatstroke can be fatal if not treated in time. Precaution is better than cure, keep an eye on the following symptoms of heatstroke:
- Excessive panting and drooling
- Fever and lethargy
- Loss of appetite
- Diarrhoea and vomiting
- Reddened gums
- Loss of consciousness
- Uncoordinated movement
Pet parents have to keep a close eye on their pets during the summer season. If you see any of these symptoms, call a vet home.
Treating a heat stroke
If you believe that your pet is down with heatstroke, follow these steps until the vet arrives:
– Lay them down in a room that is air-conditioned or has a cooler
– Use ice packs to bring their body temperature down; place it on their head, paws, belly and repeat a few times. If you don’t have ice packs, use cold towel compressions
Treat your pet to homemade ice-cream
“Pets can be given an occasional scoop of vanilla ice cream or mango slush, but not frequently as most pets can’t handle lactose. Check for pet-friendly ice-cream or then make one at home. Puree a ripe banana with some frozen yogurt and refrigerate for a day. You can even add a little bit of cinnamon in powdered form in the puree as it’s good for dogs with arthritis,” adds Iyer. A homemade icecream treat once in a while can help them cool down a little.) Tips if your pet gets a heatstroke. What should your immediate steps be to help them recover