Take extra care with pets in hot weather

By Gisele Gamble
Animals Best Friends

We have jumped into summer and hot weather is here. Keeping cool and hydrated is important for us but it is also especially important for our animals.

When you walk your dog have you ever considered the temperature of the sidewalk or street? Take your shoe off and hold your bare foot on the concrete. See how long you can hold it there. This extreme heat is what your dog feels on his feet. Walking on this hot concrete will burn their pads. Stay off sidewalks and roads when walking your dog in the heat.

Being outside in the heat is hard on cats and dogs. Although your inside cat may want to snuggle on the hottest days, cats that are outside for long periods of time can get overheated and suffer from heat stroke like dogs can.

Some of the signs of heat stroke in cats are:

• Panting, drooling, or salivating.

• Difficulty breathing.

• Bright red or pale gums.

Dogs really should not be left outside on hot days even if they are in the shade. They need plenty of cool water to drink and should be inside out of the heat.

Some of the signs of heat stroke in dogs are:

• Difficulty breathing, extreme fatigue, excessive drooling.

• Dehydration, which can be told by the color of the dog’s gums.

• Lethargy, vomiting or muscle tremors.

If your cat or dog is showing any signs of heat stroke, put a cool, wet towel on their tummy and chest. Give them small amounts of cool water or ice cubes. Get them to a veterinary as soon as possible. My girl Sweet Pea’s sister died of heat stroke many years ago. It is a horrible way to die. Do not let this happen to your pet.