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Keeping Pets Cool in These High Temperatures

With temperatures hitting as high as 90 degrees this week, pets are susceptible to the heat.

Leaving them alone in an enclosed space can have life–threatening consequences. “Even the dogs that are easy to save or the ones that we’re able to revive and have not gone into seizures yet will have long lasting organ damage that won’t show up until days later,” said Dr. Brandi from Sunrise Veterinary Services in Alpena.

It’s not just cars that can be a dangerous place. “Everyone knows of a hot car but places people don’t realize are the attic is not temperature controlled, a garage is not temperature controlled, any enclosed space, a shed, should never have an animal in them,” Stone said.

Exercise can also heat your pets up quick, especially as they adjust to the hotter temperatures with spring switching to summer. “People may not recognize as much but this time of year when it gets hot and humid quickly and dogs have not had time to adjust,” said Stone. “There’s a risk they would not be able to exchange heat very well.”

There are some warning signs that signal you need to call a veterinarian right away. “You’ll notice collapse in some cases. You’ll notice heavy panting without relaxation,” said Stone. “They might flop down. They’re searching for a cool place. They might even go into a coma or sometimes even a seizure.”

If these symptoms do occur, Stone has a few treatments you can use until the dog can be brought to a vet. “Use cool or lukewarm water to cool your dog down. Not ice cold,” she said. “Ice cold can actually delay the process. Please don’t use ice packs. Just use wet towels with lukewarm or cool water, call your vet, and start driving.”

During a 90 degree day, a car can reach 109 degrees in just 10 minutes.