To date we may not have experienced the Indian summer that we may have been hoping for but do not let that fool you! Temperatures even when it is rainy during the summer can be high. The temperature is then amplified in a car even with a window ajar. If it is 22 degrees outside the temperature can soar to 47 inside a car within an hour.
The best rule for all dog owners is do not leave your dog alone in the car. Unlike humans dogs can't regulate their own body temperature very well at all. This is only made worse by the high humidity we are experiencing at the moment. The only means by which they can lose heat is through their paws (the only place where they have sweat glands) and through panting. Imagine being locked in a tin box with a thick fur coat on and the temperature rising and you can begin to understand where we are coming from here. A caravan or conservatory can create a similar type of purgatory for your pet!
So what is best practice to keep your canine best friend cool and comfortable in the summer?
When travelling always take a bottle of water and a bowl with you. Before you set off make sure where you are going is doggy friendly so that you don't have to leave your dog in the car. Groom your dog regularly to get rid of excess dead hair. If the breed is particularly thick coated and the weather is warm why not get them stripped for summer? Here at Pearl Vets we also offer a grooming service and can bath and clip to accommodate exactly what you would like, all grooms include free nail clip and emptying of anal glands if required.
If you are leaving your dog at home alone for a short while ensure that: • there is access to clean water in a weighted bowl that can't be knocked over • there is access to a cool, shady and well ventilated area
On those very hot days exercise your dog early in the morning and late in the evening to avoid overheating in the mid day sun. If your dog is white or light coloured be aware they may get sunburn, especially on the nose, so seek out a pet safe sunscreen and make sure they are protected when required.
Heatstroke symptoms include:• heavy panting• profuse salivation• a rapid pulse• very red gums/tongue• lethargy• lack of coordination
If you suspect that your dog may be suffering from heatstroke:1. douse with cool (not cold) water2. let your dog drink small amounts of cool water3. then contact your vet for further advice
For further expert advice on taking care of your dog in hot weather, you can contact Pearl Vets on 01952 610500 or visit their website at www.pearlvetgroup.co.uk