Published 2:14 am Thursday, June 6, 2019

Some animals can’t handle the heat

Kayla Cleland from the Andalusia Animal Shelter said that there are several things that pet owners need to be on the lookout for during the hot temperatures of the summer.

“At the shelter specifically, we have plastic kid pools outside full of water for our outside dogs,” Cleland said. “For the inside dogs, we have huge fans since our back room doesn’t have an air conditioner and the walls are all concrete inside so it gives them something cool to lay down on.”

Cleland said that the shelter often receives dogs that are already immensely dehydrated.

“We try to give them as much water as we can,” Cleland said. “We also don’t try to take them outside for too long if they are going on a walk or playing outside. We have lots of dogs that come in already dehydrated, though.”

There are several dogs that, as a breed, have a hard time regulating temperature, Cleland said.

“There are certain breeds that cannot be outside like that when it is so hot,” Cleland said. “You have your old English bulldogs, Boston terriers and anything with a short snout. They don’t regulate temperature and their respiratory systems aren’t as strong as the other dogs.”

Even acts that seem like people are doing them for the best interest may cause adverse effects to their dogs, Cleland said.

“Dogs with thick fur are not supposed to be left out,” Cleland said. “But you can’t shave them. I know a lot of times people will want to shave their dogs in the heat because they think that it will cool them off, but that will actually have a negative effect where they can’t regulate their heat.”

Cleland said that the shelter is filling up even quicker than usual because of the heat.

“We are having to bring some of the outside dogs inside,” Cleland said. “Which then makes it harder on us because the space is filling up quicker.”

She said that a nice treat for animals is to freeze dog treats so they pets can cool off when eating them.

When the heat comes in, so do different insects, which has also caused a problem at the shelter, Cleland said.

“It is definitely flea and tick season,” Cleland said. “We lost a litter of puppies the other day because they were completely flea infested. We did all that we could do, but it gets hard when they are about three weeks old and covered in fleas. Mosquitos are also how dogs get heart worms so pet owners need to pay attention for that and make sure that they have given their dogs heartworm medicine.”