Pet owners are reminded to make sure their furry friends stay cool this summer.
Pet owners are reminded to make sure their furry friends stay cool this summer. Contributed

Top tips for keeping pets cool in a heatwave

HUMANS aren't the only ones to feel the heat during these blistering summer days.

Our furry and feathered friends also need some special attention when the mercury hits the heights.

"Dogs and cats can succumb to the heat very quickly," Nadia Crighton from Pet Insurance Australia said.

"It's really important that pet owners are extra vigilant when it comes to keeping their pets cool." 

"Ensuring your pet has adequate shade around their outside area is a must, also the positioning of water bowls. 

"During this type of weather consider allowing your pet to have access to a cool inside area like a laundry.

"Adding some additional water bowls is also a good idea."

 

Tips to keep your pet cool

  • Ample shaded areas.
  • Hose down concrete or under trees for a cool place to lie.
  • Extra water bowls.
  • Freeze ice-cream containers full of water and add a few dog biscuits for a cool fun treat. For cats consider ice-cubes.
  • Keep bedding and kennels out of the sun.
  • Only walk your dog early morning or in the evenings.
  • Know the signs of heat stress and seek veterinary treatment quickly.
  • Clip long-haired breeds of cats and dogs. 

"A good tip is to also only use plastic or ceramic water bowls," Ms Crighton said.

"Stainless steel can get very hot very quickly leaving your pet with a hot bowl of water." 

Pet owners are also reminded not to leave their dogs in cars. 

"Dogs and cats die in hot cars...very quickly" Crighton said.

"Always check your cat has not been locked in the car and please never leave your dog in a vehicle, even if you are only quickly running into the shop, a long queue or bumping into a friend could spell life or death for your beloved pet." 

Heatstoke (hyperthermia)

It is extremely important that every pet owner understands the early signs of heatstroke. Dogs and cats die very quickly from heatstroke unless it is treated immediately. If you suspect your animal is suffering from heatstroke or heat stress do not hesitate in seeking medical attention. Heatstroke can cause irreversible cell damage to animals that can quickly result in death.

Symptoms are:

  • Pet distress
  • Restlessness
  • Excessive panting
  • Copious volumes of saliva
  • Bright red or bluish purple gums 


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