Heat Stroke, Hot Pavement, Blue-green Algea

It sure has been hot these past couple of days. Here are some things to be on the lookout for with the temps reaching nearly 100 degrees.

Heat Stroke:

Dogs and cats have few sweat glands and cannot cool off by sweating like we can, which means they can overheat more easily. Some common ways your pet can get a heat stroke are:

In high humidity, even if temps are low
Your pet doesn't take breaks from playing to cool off
Your pet doesn't have adequeate access to water in warm temps
Your pet if left in a closed up house on a hot day with no A/C
Your pet is left inside a car even if it doesn't seem hot outside
If you think your pet is showing signs of a heat stroke i.e panting, vomiting, excessive drooling, stumbling/weakness, sudden collapse, take them inside and give them a drink of cool - NOT COLD - water and give us a call immediately. Its best to cool them down gradually. Do not place into cold water or put any cold water on them as that can cause dangerous blood pressure changes.

Walking on hot pavement:

Paw pads are great for protecting the feet from rough surfaces, providing shock absorption, and traction but they aren't immune to burns. Any hard road or street surface can be considered pavement and while black asphalt pavement is especially concerning when it comes to heating up, even concrete surfaces can get too hot for a dog to walk on. The ground is always hotter than the outside temperature. If it is too painful for you to place your hand on the pavement for 7 seconds, then it is too painful for your dog to walk on.

The best time to take your dog for a walk is either early mornings or later in the evenings. You should also try to stick to walking on cooler natural grass.

Blue-Green Algea:

We know a lot of dogs enjoy cooling off by going for a swim or drinking from a lake/pond, but with this hot weather it is perfect for Cyanobacteria (blue-green algea) to thrive in bodies of water. Water containing toxic algal blooms will often have the appearance of a pea-green paint or slime on the surface. If your pet shows any of these symptoms call us immediately:

Diarrhea or vomiting
Breathing difficulties

We hope all of our South Forsyth Animal Hospital family stays safe this summer.

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