While you, "Slip, Slop, Slap" and seek shade this summer, make sure the family's favourite tail wagger is sun-safe too!  Dogs are the pets most at risk of heat exhaustion, because summer can make their natural cooling system less effective.

As Rover pants to cool down, his fluids should evaporate into the surrounding air.  But if humidity is high, then evaporation is less and so this system works less effectively.  This causes body temerature to rise quickly and heat exhaustion sets in.

A dog can die or become severely brain damaged from heat exhaustion.

Heat exhaustion (or heat stroke) happens quickly.  Signs include: excessive panting and drooling, a staring expression, constant moving and progressive muscular weakness and lack of co-ordination.

You can prevent heat exhaustion in your dog by following these rules:

 

DO NOT leave your dog in the car or any small enclosed space.  (Even if the outside temperature is in the low 20's, the air inside a car can reach 40 degrees within 15 to 20 minutes)

MAKE SURE that Rover has plenty of shade and cool water at home especially if you are away from home for long periods or at work.

FORGET THE DOGGY JOG - pet owners who take their dog for a jog, take note.  Your daily run with the family dog could do more harm than good.  Unlike humans, dogs do not sweat - and they wear a fur coat 24/7.  Wait for cool early mornings or late evenings to exercise your dog and remember the humidity factor.

IF YOU MUST confine your dog to a restricted space, ensure it is well away from direct sunlight and has plenty of breeze and/or a fan.  Provide plenty of cool water.