Keeping your dog cool during the 100° temperatures

It’s a common trend to leave a dog in a parked vehicle while the owner goes shopping or has a quick lunch with a friend. By doing so, a dog’s chance of heat stroke or suffering brain damage rises in a matter of moments. When it’s 106° F with the heat index, it’s unhealthy for any living thing to be in that situation, even with a window rolled down, especially for certain breeds like pugs and the range of Bulldogs out there.

Not to mention the temperature inside a car accelerates, sometimes up to twenty degrees more than it is outside. So just imagine how baked the inside of a car would feel to your pooch when it’s as hot as it has been lately. Also, don’t come to the illusion that the lingering air condition left after the car was turned off will save your dog, because it won’t be enough with record breaking temperatures in the 100s.

Another thing to keep in mind is that dogs cannot cool themselves down like humans can. They rely on us to provide them with a cool and comfortable environment in this unbearable weather. If you’re doing errands, please get someone to watch your dog at home for a little while, or take them to a dog daycare to allow them to play a bit in a controlled and air conditioned atmosphere.

Fortunately there are a handful of states with certain statutes that prohibit leaving an animal in a confined vehicle. South Carolina may not be among them, but we do have animal cruelty laws that require us to provide proper shelter for animals that protects them physically from any hostile weather.

If you’re worried about your dog’s well being after prolonged exposure to the hot weather this summer, there are certain symptoms that help identify any possible heat related issues. Look for any increased panting, heartbeats, and thirst. Also inspect them for glazy eyes, loss of coordination, and any vomiting occurring. If you do see any of these signs, take your dog into an air conditioned location quickly, apply cold towels to their body and head, and give them ice cubes to lick.

Another precaution is to shave your dog down if they contain a lot of hair. But this comes with the likelihood of getting sunburned when out for walks. As with humans, there are several over the counter lotions and sprays you can buy to help soothe your dog’s red and crusty skin, such as anything with Aloe and Vitamin E. But just to be safe, make sure to put sun block on your dog as well as yourself when out in this scorching weather!



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