Learning how to spot signs of heat exhaustion in your Pit Bull could save their life one day.
Common sense tells us that during the hot months we should watch our dogs and make sure they are not too hot. However, you should pay attention during the cooler months as well. Following is an explanation of heat exhaustion and how to spot the warning signs early.
Heat exhaustion can effect your dog in any climate. Obviously the hotter the climate the greater the risk for heat exhaustion will be. However, you should not think because you live in a cooler climate your pet is not at risk too. They are. Dogs get rid of body heat by panting. Panting is their natural air conditioner and through panting they regulate their body heat.
Heat exhaustion occurs when they can not rid their bodies of excess heat through panting. When this happens they will start to pant faster and harder. They may begin to drool and if their body heat is very high they will get disoriented. These are all signs of heat exhaustion and immediate action should be taken in order to stop them from getting any hotter.
How to quickly cool your dog down
- Run cool water over the stomachs and groin area. Using a water hose is ideal but if all you have is bottled water poor it evenly over their stomachs and groin. Then fan them with a towel or shirt.
- Put them in front of an air conditioner. If you’re outdoors take them to your car and put them directly in front of the air conditioning.
- Wipe rubbing alcohol over their bellies. When the alcohol as it evaporates it will cool them down. Wipe them down thoroughly around their belly and groin areas.
- Wet them down and put them in the shade. You can wet them down completely and put them in the shade to help cool them down too.
If you suspect your dog is overheating get them to the vet immediately. Put them in your car roll down the windows, turn the air conditioner on high and put them directly in front of it to start cooling them down.
Take precautions and prevent heat exhaustion
Keep these tips in mind to help prevent heat exhaustion:
- Taking frequent breaks gives your dogs body time to catch up and effectively regulate the heat that is already built up in their system.
- Wiping some water on their bellies will help keep them cool as the air flows around them as they move.
- Try exercising in the cooler parts of the day like early morning or in the evening.