Published: 04 August 2018

What should you do if you think your dog is displaying signs of heatstroke?

The following guidelines will help should your dog become overheated:

  • Watch your dog for signs of overheating during the hot weather. Dogs having difficulty with hot temperatures exhibit a combination of the symptoms mentioned in our previous blog.
  • Move your pet to a cooler area immediately, preferably with a fan or air conditioning. Dogs with heavy fur coats and short muzzles tend to manifest signs sooner than other breeds.
  • Reduce your dog’s temperature by putting cool wet towels over his neck, under his armpits, and between his hind legs. Wetting his earflaps and paw pads using cool water is also advisable.
  • If you are outdoors, a stream or pond can be used to help him cool down.
  • Cool gel coats and mats may also be beneficial.
  • Give your dog fresh cool drinking water. If your dog refuses to drink, try wetting his tongue with the water instead.
  • Finally, transport your overheated dog to your vet. Call ahead so he can be alerted to prepare for your dog’s treatment. Your pet may have to receive oxygen, some fluids, and other treatments. With severe overheating, seizure and or cardiac arrest may occur

We discuss this and other safety considerations on our First Aid for Dogs course.


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