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Signs of Heat Stroke in Dogs and When to Visit an Emergency Vet in San Francisco

Signs-of-Heat-Stroke-in-Dogs-and-When-to-Visit-an-Emergency-Vet-in-San-Francisco

Summer is the time for vacations, beach days, and lots of fun in the sun. Unfortunately, hot weather can put your dog at risk of heat exhaustion. Often referred to as heat stroke, heat exhaustion occurs when an animal’s body temperature exceeds a healthy range and won’t come down independently. Mild cases are treatable at home, but severe cases require emergency care. Without visiting an emergency vet in San Francisco, more severe cases can result in death. 

At Animal Farm Pet Hospital, we’re here to help you protect your pet. Read on to learn how to identify the signs of heat exhaustion and when you should bring your furry friend in for an evaluation. 

How to Identify Heat Exhaustion

Heat exhaustion can cause a wide range of symptoms in your pet. Some of the most common include: 

 

  • Excessive panting or difficulty breathing: Panting non-stop or faster than usual could signify a dog is overheated. This symptom is especially important to monitor in flat-faced breeds, like pugs and Boston terriers. 
  • Dehydration: Signs that your dog may be dehydrated include sunken eyes, dry nose, lethargy, and excessive panting. 
  • Fever: A dry, hot nose could indicate that your dog has a fever. A body temperature of 103°F is considered a fever in dogs. 
  • Excessive drooling: Heat exhaustion could cause excessive drool that is stickier and thicker than usual. 
  • Changes in gum color: Gray, purple, bluish, or bright red gums could be caused by dehydration. 
  • Rapid pulse: Place your hand on your dog’s chest bear their front elbow joint to feel their pulse. A rapid pulse could indicate heat exhaustion. 
  • Lethargy, weakness, or dizziness: These symptoms could indicate heat exhaustion or dehydration and should always be evaluated by a vet. 
  • Vomiting or diarrhea
  • Muscle tremors

 

When to Visit an Emergency Vet in San Francisco

If your dog is showing early signs of heat exhaustion, such as excessive panting, take them to a cooler area immediately. Wet them with cool (not cold!) water to help lower their body temperature. Provide lukewarm water to drink, too. 

Contact an emergency in San Francisco if they do not recover immediately or if they show more severe symptoms, like rapid pulse or lethargy. Heat exhaustion can cause numerous complications, so it’s best to err on the side of caution. If you think your dog may be suffering from heat exhaustion, contact us immediately. 

 

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