Because we often encounter such cases during summer, we have decided to write a short article in order to trigger an alarm signal in this regard. In fact, this problem is present not only during the summer, but it depends much on the outside weather. Heat stroke in dogs is the sudden increase of the body temperature without the possibility of thermoregulation.
The causes can be multiple:
– breed predisposition, such as brahicephalic breeds (bulldog, boxer, pekignese), or long-haired dogs
– puppies which have less than 6 months or dogs with heart problems, in particular the elderly ones
– areas with high temperatures, the typical case of “the dog left in the car”. In the car the temperature rises quickly even leaving the glass down, so in about 30 minutes it can reach up to 50 degrees. The same situation we encounter in the case of the dogs kept in attics.
– low thermoregulatory capacity of dogs: they do not sweat like us, but they lose heat through breathing, but this is not enough for elevated temperatures.
– accelerated breathing
– dry mucous, dark in the initial phase and pale in the collapse phase
– dense saliva
– dark red tongue
– fails to hold on to the feet
– blood diarrhea (in advanced cases)
– blood urine
Heat stroke is an absolute veterinary emergency, which is why no minute should be lost. A dog in such a situation must be taken to the nearest veterinary clinic without delay and without waiting for the veterinary doctor to get to your home by the veterinary ambulance, when possible. Meanwhile, you can do something for your dog by yourself. Water the paws and the inguinal area of the animal; it should not be very cold, nor do you put ice because you do nothing but worsen the puppy’s condition!
Therapy consists especially in the administration of fluids to restore hemodynamic balance and oxygen therapy. This is the first step to treating the acute phase. Heat stroke may, however, have consequences in the coming days, so the patient should be carefully monitored and kept under therapy as they risk developing kidney, cardiac or systemic problems.
Can the heat stroke be prevented? Of course! Just keep in mind a few things:
– do not take dogs away during the peak hours of the day
– do not keep them under the sun
– avoid keeping them in warm and unspoiled ambience
– DO NOT leave the in the car not even for a few minutes, either in the sun or in the shade
– make sure you always have a bottle of water for them and a bowl
– in the case of dogs living exclusively outside, make sure they can shelter in the shade … and in the case of dogs who have trouble moving, make sure that they always manage to shelter in the shade.
We are always non-stop at your disposal, but we often need your help to keep our friends away from life-threatening situations!