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Keeping Your Dog Cool in Austin This Summer

Each year around this time, Austin weather reaches temperatures that are proven to be too hot for our furry family members to be out and about. Our friends at Austin Pets Alive! wants the Austin community be aware of the dangers of exercising dogs in the heat. As comfort experts and Austinites alike, we felt it necessary to take the time this week to relay valuable information concerning how to keep your pet cool this summer and what to do if they are overheating.

Four key signs that your dog may be overheating:

  1. Your dog is lagging behind on a walk or run
  2. Your dog’s eyes or mouth are bright and red
  3. Your dog’s tongue is hanging way out of their mouth
  4. Your dog is hot to the touch

How to safely cool your dog who is suffering from heat exhaustion and potentially heat stroke:

  • Stop activity immediately
  • Let your dog drink water and get wet or swim to speed the cooling process

Other key items to keep in-mind this summer:

  • Asphalt is too hot and can burn your dog’s paw pads
    • 5 second rule – If you cannot hold your hand to the pavement for more than five seconds,  APA! suggests that you and your dog walk on grass instead
  • If your dog is short-nosed, overweight, long-haired, senior status, or has lung or breathing issues, they are at higher risk for heat stroke
  • Your dog is 10x more likely to suffer from heat exhaustion than you are
    • Unlike yourself, your dog lacks the ability to sweat and can only dissipate heat through their mouth, feet and ears
  • Avoid walking your dog in the late afternoon and evening hours when temperatures are highest
  • Keep bottled water and alcohol wipes with you
  • Do not keep your dog inside of a car for any amount of time unless the AC is on
    • It takes only minutes for your car to heat up to an unsafe temperature

If you see a dog who shows sign of overheating and is lagging behind on a walk, be certain to alert their owner and help save a life this summer!

Source: http://www.austinpetsalive.org/2016/06/media-release-know-the-signs-of-overheating-in-dogs-keep-pets-safe-in-the-heat-of-the-summer/