Brachycephalic Pets and Heat Stress

Heat Stress

Heat stroke and heat exhaustion 

Animals can suffer heat stress anytime of the year, even in mild weather conditions. Cats and dogs cannot respond the way us humans do when it comes to trying to cool down, many animals have a very small number on sweat glands and mostly rely on panting or external cooling to lose heat. Pets with thick coats feel it even worse! Brachycephalic breeds are prone to heat stroke and heat exhaustion so we must ensure they are well ventilated and cool at all times, this was our inspiration for finding products that assist with making life easier for our flat face friends. 

What is heat stroke? 

Heatstroke is a state of hyperthermia (elevated core body temperature above the normal range) resulting in heat injury to tissues. Heatstroke occurs when heat generation exceeds the body’s ability to lose heat.

 Signs and symptoms for cats/dogs

Panting which increases as heatstroke progresses
Drooling, salivating
Agitation, restlessness
Very red or pale gums
Bright red tongue
Increased heart rate
Breathing distress
Vomiting Diarrhea (possibly with blood)

Signs of mental confusion, delirium
Dizziness, staggering
Lethargy, weakness
Muscle tremors
Collapsing and lying down
Little to no urine production

What to do if you suspect your pet has heat stroke/exhaustion ? 

Remove your pet from the hot environment immediately.
Apply or spray tepid/cool water onto the animal’s fur and skin. Then apply a fan/fanning to maximise heat loss.
Wetting down the area around your pet can also help.
Don’t use ice-cold water or ice as this may worsen the problem.

Then take your pet to the nearest Veterinarian immediately.

Heatstroke is an emergency – always see a vet. Even if your pet looks like they may be recovering or you just suspect they might have heatstroke they should still always be checked by a vet.