Studies have shown that if owners treat their pets for heat stroke before reaching the vet, the risk of death can be almost halved. It’s really important that owners know the basic steps for recognising heat stroke and how to take steps to start to cool your pet down.
Watch the video below to hear Pete explain what you need to do, or follow the steps listed below.
How to treat an overheated dog
- Telephone your vet to make arrangements for your dog to be seen as soon as possible, as an emergency
- Take your dog away from the warm area into a cooler environment (eg from the sunny area to the shade)
- Cool your pet down quickly but carefully
- Use lukewarm water if possible: ultra-cold water or ice causes the superficial blood vessels to shrink down, causing a reduced ability for heat loss from the skin surface.
- Cool the dog in multiple ways: stand them in water, pour water over them, and cover them with wet towels
- Maximise heat loss by standing the wet dog in front of an airstream, such as a fan. Note that a fan on its own (eg in front of a dry dog) will not have a significant cooling effect.
- Drive the dog to the vet, with the car windows open to create a cross-flow of moving air to keep cooling the dog down
- Follow up care by your vet is essential, to ensure that there is no delayed damage to the internal organs
To watch the video, click on the link below