Heat, fireworks can be too much for pets

Published 12:05 am Tuesday, July 3, 2018

The month of July may be fun for humans, but their companions may not enjoy it as much. Local veterinarian Toby Atkinson said that dogs suffer from heat strokes and anxiety from fireworks around this time.

“Dogs don’t sweat like we do,” Atkinson said. “Their primary source of getting rid of heat is by panting. They get a lot of the moisture out of their body by their tongues.”

Atkinson said that some of the signs to look in a dog suffering from a heat stroke are excessive panting, not being able to calm down and weakness.

“Especially in short nosed breeds, the risk of a heat stroke is a lot higher,” Atkinson said. “Some things that you can do if you notice your dog getting hot is to get them in the shade, fill a baby pool with water and put them in there and get a bag of ice and place it on them. The main thing you need to do is get their core temperature down.”

Atkinson said that people need to notice the signs earlier so they can be taken care of at a veterinarian’s office properly.

“Most dogs go into shock whenever they are experiencing a heat stroke,” Atkinson said. “So getting them to a vet’s office is the best thing that you can do. We can get them the I.V. fluids that they need and start getting the fever down.”

With the 4th of July around the corner, Atkinson said that people need to be prepared early about their dogs.

“You have to know how your dog will act and where he is going to be,” Atkinson said. “With that being said, talking to your pet provider is important.”

Atkinson said that the best thing to do is for people to take their pets to a pet resort or their pet provider.

“Especially if you take them to your pet provider, they can provide all the medication to make sure that they are sedated and calm,” Atkinson said. “But with that being said, some sedatives work with some dogs and it sometimes doesn’t work with others, that’s why it is important to take them somewhere safe.”

Atkinson said that keeping pets inside will also help them be safe.

“If a dog is a runner when fireworks go off, then sedation won’t stop them from running,” Atkinson said. “So the best thing for them is to be inside in a safe place.”