Vets Urge Owners Not To Take Dogs For A Walk In Temperatures Over 19C
Brits have been treated to some glorious weather this week, with temperatures soaring well into the 30s on Thursday.
But hot weather isn't so ideal for dogs, who can be at risk of heat stroke if they're not kept cool and hydrated.
Now, one vet has issued a warning about walking our pooches in the scorching weather, explaining they shouldn't be exercised in temperatures over 19°C.
VetsNow explain: "It's generally safe in temperatures of up to 19°C (68°F) but be careful when the mercury rises above this. Even at temperatures as low as 20°C (70°F) dogs are at risk of heat stroke.
"Heat stroke in dogs is essentially a high temperature not caused by a fever. It occurs when dogs are no longer able to self-regulate and keep their temperature at a comfortable level."
VetsNow continued to explain that between the temperatures of 16-19°C it's generally safe to exercise dogs at any time of the day.
Once the temperatures climb to 20-23°C, dogs are at risk of heat stroke if exercised too rigorously - or, if they have an underlying health condition such as obesity or breathing difficulties.
From 24-27°C, extreme caution should be taken, particularly with large, obese, flat-faced and very young dogs as most will find these temperatures very uncomfortable.
VetsNow consider 28-31°C dangerous for all dogs, but life threatening for puppies, larger breeds or dogs that are obese or flat-faced. At temperatures of 32°C or higher, heat stroke is a major risk regardless of breed or condition.
So how do you keep your fur baby safe in the blistering heat?
Blue Cross has issued lots of handy guidance for how to prevent and spot heat stroke in dogs. They explain:
- Make sure your dog has access to clean water at all times, ideally a large bowl filled to the brim. Carry water and a bowl with you on walks.
- On hot days, walk your dog during the cooler parts of the day, in the early morning and late evening.
- Watch your pet for signs of over-heating, including heavy panting and loss of energy. If you recognise these signs when on a walk, stop, find a shady spot and give your dog water.
- Never leave your dog (or any pet) alone in a car, even with the windows open.
- Make cooling tasty treats by making ice cubes with your dog's favourite food inside or stuff a Kong and pop it in the freezer.
- Be particularly careful with short nosed dogs such as bull breeds, boxers, pugs, older dogs, and those that are overweight. These dogs can get heatstroke simply by running around.
You can find more helpful advice on the Blue Cross website.
With temperatures as hot as they have been this week, it's probably best to take your dog out first thing in the morning, as temperatures in many parts of the UK have only been dropping below 20°C after 10pm.
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