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Heat Stroke in Dogs

Heat stroke in dogs is a true emergency situation that occurs when the dogs’ body temperature becomes extremely high and can cause your beloved pet’s DEATH within minutes!

Do You Know The Symptoms?



It is really important to know how to prevent and how to deal with dog heat stroke.

Dogs’ bodies are different than ours. They have higher body temperature, no sweat glands (just a few on the pads of their feed) and are VERY sensitive to heat.

Sadly, irresponsibility -or in some other cases ignorance- is the reason for a big number of pets every year to suffer a slow and agonizing death as a result of heat stroke.

This little angel was one of them...

R.I.P. Dixie.You know your dad didn't mean to cause you any harm.It's just that, in many cases, ignorance kills...

"That's how I lost my beloved "Dixie".... My husband left her in a vehicle on a hot morning for about an hour. He thought it wasn't hot enough yet and the window was partially rolled down...

He didn’t know then but he learned the hard way. We were all devastated....

It can happen to anyone... That's why it is so important to share this information and educate people."

by Patsy W. B.




How to prevent heat stroke in dogs

  • NEVER leave a dog alone in a parked car on a hot day
  • Not even for a few minutes
  • Not even if you leave the windows partially open
  • Not even if you have parked in a shady place

NEVER EVER leave your dog alone in the car.  Even on a cooler day, the atmosphere inside your car can heat up to really dangerous temperatures within minutes! Being left locked in cars is the number one reason for heat stroke in dogs.

Always Keep In Mind

  • When it’s really hot outside, it’s not a good time for long walks, running on the beach and similar activities.
  • Keep your dogs indoors as much as possible.
  • Sick dogs, dogs with health conditions, puppies, older dogs are ALL very vulnerable and facing a higher risk of heat stroke.
  • Certain breeds with flat faces and short noses (Boxer, Bulldog, Shih Tzu, Pug, Boston Terrie) are even more sensitive to hot environments.
  • Make sure that the dog has always plenty of fresh, cool water and can find some shade.
  • Be very alert if for any reason you need to muzzle or confine your dog in a high temperature environment.
  • Is your dog going to travel with you by airplane? If s/he is not flying in the cabin with you PLEASE, make a really good research before choosing the airline company. Pets that fly as checked baggage or cargo could be in BIG DANGER. 


NEVER leave your dog locked in the car.

Prevent heat stroke in dogs. NEVER leave them alone in a car on a hot summer day.
  • Groomer's appointment? Great. But... have in mind that a muzzled dog could easily die under the hairdryer on a hot day. Make sure you trust your precious friend to the right people.
  • Don’t make your dog walk on hot pavements. Your feet are protected by your shoes and you don’t realize that heat could burn your dog’s paws.
  • Summer is the best time for their haircut. But remember, not too short haircuts and definitely no shaving. A thin layer of fur protects the skin from sun burns. If you don’t want to cut any fur, make sure you bath and brush regularly.
  • To eliminate the danger of heat stroke in dogs, always walk or exercise them early in the morning or after the sunset. And don’t forget to bring a bottle of fresh water with you.
  • If you’re traveling with your dog to hot climates give him some time to adjust to the new climate.
  • Hot summer days are not meant for long walks or hiking. You should always have in mind the time required to return back home.


Hot pavements can burn your dog's paws. Also the heat rising from the asphalt make things worse, increase the body temperature and, as a result, the risk of heat stroke in dogs.

Take immediate action and begin the cooling procedure the moment you realize that your dog is suffering from heatstroke.

Use any source of cool water - cool but not cold - you can find (a hose, some wet towels or purchase some bottled water) as soon as you notice any of the symptoms in the list bellow. 



What are the most common symptoms
of heat stroke in dogs?

  • Heavy, noisy panting
  • Increased body temperature
  • Excessive panting
  • Fidgeting
  • Glazed eyes / Dry nose
  • Weakness
  • Collapse
  • Increased heartbeat
  • Vomiting
  • Drooling
  • Bloody diarrhea
  • Change in the color of gums & eyes
  • Staggering / Unable to stand
  • Unconsciousness


  What you can do if your dog
had a heat stroke

STAY CALM AND ACT IMMEDIATELY!



  • If the dog is unconscious wrap him with a wet towel and rush to the vet.
  • If the dog is conscious take him or her to the shade or if possible into air conditioning.
  • Start by giving small amounts of water. Gulping the water can cause vomiting and further dehydration.
  • NEVER try to put water in the mouth of dog that cannot swallow on its own.
  • Use a hose, a bucket, wet towels or other cloth. Anything  you can find to cool the sick dog.
  • Place the dog in a cool (not cold) water bath if possible. Don’t use ice, that might injure the skin. If the dog does not recover within a few minutes, get him out and go to the vet hospital.
  • If a bottle of water is all you can find, get some water in your palm and gently pet your dog (on the head, neck and paws).
  • Is there a fan available?  Put it near the dog.
  • Call your vet and calmly explain the situation. You MUST stay calm and follow his advice. It is most likely that the doctor will ask to examine the animal himself.


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I hope all the information given in this article will help you prevent any incident of heat stroke in dogs. Either it is your dog or just some other dog in danger.

This is very important. In case you see a strange dog locked in a parked car or tethered under the hot sun PLEASE TAKE ACTION. Call a store employ, the local animal control or the police. ANYONE who could help the poor animal and prevent an unnecessary death.


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