What’s Your Dog’s Heat Safety Quotient?

What’s Your Dog’s Heat Safety Quotient?

Your Gilbert dog sitter takes the care of your dogs very seriously, especially in the dangerous heat of Arizona. Take this true/false quiz and see if you can pass with flying colors.

1)      It only takes 15 minutes for your car to become so hot your dog suffers serious physical harm.

False –It only takes 10!

2)      Parking in the shade will keep your dog comfortably cool if left in a car.

False – this only buys a few minutes at best to slow down the rising temperature. A shaded car will still reach very high internal temperatures dangerous to pets within minutes.

3)      A dog’s normal internal body temperature is normally 100 degrees- 102.5 degrees.

True –Anything above 103 is generally seen as an emergency. Canine temperatures are best taken rectally for an accurate reading. If you have been exercising your dog and she seems listless afterwards, do you yourself a favor and check her temperature!

4)       The best practice for cooling a dog down suspected of being in heat stroke or overheated in general is to put ice on their body.

False –  Submerging a dog in ice can actually cause the blood flow to constrict in the veins which will slow down the dogs cooling process.

dog sitters in Gilbert

Clyde pants after some good old fashioned running

5)      If a dog is panting, he is cooling himself off enough to stay out of the heat danger zone.

False – This is the only way a dog can cool itself, just as we sweat. However, just because a dog is panting does not mean he will stay cool enough. Its important to monitor your dog after exercise to be sure they have not overheated.

6)      If outside, as long as a dog has shade and water, there is no danger of overheating or heat stroke.

False!!! –  A dog’s internal body temperature can still go above the normal range even if it has drunk water and is in a shaded area!  As a little girl when we lived in Texas, we nearly lost 2 dogs to heatstroke. Both dogs had a large bowl of water and were under a large shaded car port. The dogs were unresponsive when I called their names and were like sacks of potatos when we tried to rouse them. Luckily a quick thinking neighbor knew what to do and placed both dogs in the sink in cool, not ice cold, water. Both dogs made a recovery – thank goodness.

7)      If you exercise your dog in the early morning hours, they are safe from heatstroke.

False. Sadly a client of ours was exercising their dog in the morning about 9. Their dog overheated and on the way to the vet, she died. PLEASE do NOT underestimate the heat here. Just like people, different dogs have different tolerance levels to heat. Especially during the months where our humidity is high, exercise for dogs should be kept to extremely early morning hours or well after the sun has gone down.

8)    If you are going to exercise your dog, you should keep exercise times to 10 minutes or less outside if the temperature is above 85.

True – Again we’re talking about the dog’s INTERNAL body temperature, not how the temperature feels outside. The higher the temperature, the faster their internal body temperature rises.

Knowing your dog’s limits, because often they do not know their own, is very important. It’s up to you as your dog’s guardian to take excellent care of them just like your Gilbert dog sitters do when we sit for your furbabies.

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