Summertime can be dangerous for dogs because of the extreme heat. Do you have any tips for determining whether it’s safe to take your dog out for a walk in the heat? How hot is too hot for dogs?
An expert chief medical officer at Veterinary Care Group tells, “If it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for your pet.” Before letting your dog out in the heat, make sure you read this.
What temperatures are considered dangerous for dogs?
As with humans, each dog’s tolerance for heat varies significantly.
Squillace noted that “individual susceptibility to the heat and weariness differs” amongst people. There is no way to give a certain temperature that an animal can withstand.
Try to stay indoors if the temperature is above 90 degrees Fahrenheit because it can rapidly become dangerous. If it’s 80 to 90 degrees outdoors, limit your dog’s time outside, provide him with lots of water, and keep an eye out for any signs of heat exhaustion or heat stroke before it’s too late.
Think twice about taking your dog to the dog park or for a long walk if the weather is terrible outside.
How Hot is Too Hot for Dogs?
How hot is too hot for dogs? Humans are better at maintaining body temperature than dogs. Panting is a dog’s best defense against the heat because they can only sweat via their paws. As a result, they are prone to illness if the weather is too hot.
While dogs may have little sweat glands in their pads, Dr. Squillace says that panting is the primary way they regulate their body temperature. As a result, if the temperature rises above a certain level, dogs are unable to adequately cool themselves.
That’s a harrowing prospect, given that dogs, like humans, are susceptible to a number of heat-related ailments, including heat cramps, heat exhaustion, and heat stroke, all of which can lead to death in a matter of minutes.
In hot weather, dogs can suffer from heat exhaustion and heat stroke, according to Dr. Squillace.
Temperatures exceeding 105.7 degrees Fahrenheit (three degrees above normal) can cause lethargy, weakness, seizure, coma, and possibly brain damage in dogs if the dog’s internal temperature rises above this level.
Signs of heat exhaustion in dogs
When it’s hot outside, keep a watchful eye on your dog. Symptoms of a heat-related illness, such as heat exhaustion, may be present if you notice the following.
- Hot skin
- Excessive panting
- Bright red gums
- Vomiting or diarrhea
To avoid dehydration, keep your dog indoors or under some shade as soon as possible and make sure he has access to plenty of water to hydrate. With a hose or moist cloth, getting him wet will undoubtedly help.
Take him to a vet or emergency clinic promptly if his condition does not improve. Also, don’t forget to crank up the AC on the way there!
Factors that increase the risk of heat illness in dogs
Some dogs are more susceptible to heat-related illnesses because of their physical characteristics or because they are in a poorer state of health (or a combination of both).
Heat exhaustion and heatstroke can be caused by a number of factors, including:
- Underlying medical conditions (like a cardiac disease)
- Brachycephalic breeds (aka dogs with short snouts — like pugs)
- Strenuous exercise in hot conditions
- Lack of access to shade
- Lack of access to water
- Poor ventilation
It’s usually a good idea to have a plan in case your dog gets sick.
How to avoid heat illnesses in dogs
Dr. Squallice has some advice on how to keep your dog from overheating.
- Walk your dog in the early morning or later in the evening.
- Avoid excessive play and exercise on hot days.
- Keep him in the shade.
- Provide adequate water.
- Keep him in air-conditioned, well-ventilated rooms in your house.
- Never leave your dog in a car.
Because cars may reach dangerously high temperatures in just a few minutes, even when it feels like it’s really cool outdoors, dogs left in cars are an extremely prevalent cause of heatstroke in puppies. So if you leave your dog in the car while you run errands, it can quickly turn into an emergency situation.
In order to be on the safe side, never leave your dog unattended in your car.