With the temperatures forecasted to be in the mid-90s over the next few days animal shelters and rescue groups are reminding pet owners just how dangerous the heat can be for animals.
Pet owners are also encouraged to watch for the following signs of a heat stroke:
- Anxious expression
- Refusal to obey commands
- Warm, dry skin
- High fever
- Rapid heartbeat
Even if a pet received emergency treatment for heatstroke, the condition could still be deadly.
Pet owners should take the following steps to keep their pets safe during the hot weather:
- Never leave pets in the car. Though it may seem cool outside, the sun can raise the temperatures inside a car to 120 degrees in a matter of minutes, even with the windows rolled down.
- Make sure pets do not overexert themselves. Though exercise is an essential part of keeping your dog or cat at a healthy weight, overdoing it can cause pets to overheat. Keep walks to a gentle pace and make sure plenty of water is easily accessible. Try to limit exercise to mornings or evenings hours. If possible, find a spot to take your pet for a walk inside — pavement temperatures can be 30-50 degrees hotter than the air temperature. When dogs or cats start panting a lot or seems exhausted, it's time to stop.
- Before taking a dog on a walk, pet owners should test the pavement temperature with their hand. If it's too hot for a hand, it's too hot for a dog's paws.
- Water, water everywhere. Whether indoors or out, both humans and pets need access to lots of fresh water during the summer. Make sure to check the water bowl several times a day to be sure it's full. When venturing out of the house, pet owners plenty of water for humans and their furry friends.
This story was originally published by Katie Cox on WRTV in Indianapolis.