Pet Heat Safety in Maurice, LA
Heat affects all of us, but in very different ways. Our capacity for heat is different from a dog’s which is different from a cat’s, which is different from a horse’s—you get the idea! Therefore, as the weather heats up, it’s important to be aware of what temperatures (and humidity) your animals can tolerate and provide them with relief when it gets too hot. Heat stroke is a major concern for any animal, so learning how to prevent it is essential.
Heat Safety Tips for Small Animals
Firstly, your dog or cat can always benefit from the air conditioning unit, so if it’s simply too hot outside, leave them inside! However, we know that sometimes it is necessary to brave the heat, whether for the call of mother nature, or some much-needed exercise. So here are some tips to staying cool in the summer sun:
- NEVER leave your pet in the car, no matter how fast you think you’ll be. Particularly on a hot, humid day, the temperature in the car can rise dramatically in a matter of minutes, putting your pet in serious danger of heatstroke.
- When your pet is outside for any length of time, ensure they have plenty of water and shade to rest in.
- Take your daily walks either earlier in the morning or later in the evening to avoid the hottest times of day and stay off of hot pavement. It can burn their paws and raise their body temperature far too quickly.
- Recognize the signs of heatstroke: lethargy, excessive panting, discolored gums, rapid heart rate, and excessive drooling. If your pet exhibits any of these signs, bring them to us immediately.
Heat Safety Tips for Large Animals
Larger animals such as cows and horses don’t always have the luxury of air conditioning, although some barns are outfitted with at least fans or a misting system. However, it can be impractical to keep them in a barn all day. Follow these tips for helping your bovines and horses to stay cool:
- Make sure your fields have plenty of shade throughout the day for your animals to rest in.
- Always have fresh, cool water available for them to drink.
- If you have to put them to work, ensure you do so earlier in the day or later when the heat of the day isn’t at its peak.
- Be aware of the humidity level. High humidity makes it harder for your animals to expel heat so they’ll need extra water, and again, plenty of shade.
- Recognize the signs of heatstroke: panting, slobbering, disorientation, and even collapse for cattle. Lethargy, rapid pulse, panting, red tongue and gums, stumbling and collapse for horses.
If you notice any signs of heat stress in any of your animals, bring them straight to us if possible. Otherwise, try to cool them down as best you can with cool (but not cold!) wet towels or cool water poured over the body, until you can bring them to us or our vet can come to you.