250.374.1485

Heat Stroke

We all love a hot Kamloops summer, but with the heat, comes a concern for our four-legged friends – hyperthermia or heat stroke. Hyperthermia can become life-threatening if not treated immediately and it does not take long for a dog’s body to overheat. A canine’s normal temperature is around 38 Celsius, a temperature above 40.5 Celsius becomes a true emergency!

Most cases of hyperthermia are caused by a dog being left in a hot vehicle; however, issues also arise with over exercising on a hot day or being left outside without adequate shade. Any dog can get heat stroke although obese dogs, dogs with heart disease or brachycephalic breeds (short-nosed like a pug) are much more prone.

The first sign of heat stroke is visible distress – excessive panting and restlessness, an increase in salivation from the nose and/or mouth may be noted. If not able to cool down, the dog will become unsteady on his feet, and the gums will turn a blue/purple or a bright red colour, indicating a lack of oxygen. Without proper care, prolonged hyperthermia results in death.

If a dog is suspected of having heat stroke, immediately start to cool him with a cool, wet towel/apply cold water to pads/groin and armpits. Fans are also an effective way of cooling. Immediate veterinary attention is required in all cases, even if the dog appears to recover. Complications of hyperthermia include but are not limited to kidney failure, coagulation disorders, low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) and heart arrhythmias.

Prevention is key; please do not bring your pet with you on hot days and if she outside, ensure there are both adequate shade and water provided. If you find a pet in distress inside a hot car, try to find the owner and call your local police.

Written by Dr. Rebeccah Stewart, DVM

Our beautiful 7 year old black Lab (ROCKY) came to this clinic a little over one week ago because he…

Stacey Bruno

Always super friendly and they always do such a great job whether it's something simple or a major surgery. Your…

Paula Cousins

Awesome experience here. I was very worried about bringing my senior cat to the vet as he is pretty skittish…

Nic 83

Very accommodating and knowledgeable staff. My dog is not the most pleasant going in and they always find a way…

Bryce Parks

senior focus senior focus

Blog

dog

What You Need to Know About Kennel Cough

Kennel cough is a highly contagious upper respiratory infection, that can be caused by a variety of different viruses and bacteria. The kennel cough vaccine available is able to protect against one of the most common sources of kennel cough, but just like with our human influenza vaccine, it cannot cover every strain.

Read More
See All Articles