GOLDEN VALLEY, Minn. -- Hot temperatures can be very dangerous for pets. They can succumb to heat stroke, dehydration and even get sunburned - all of which can be prevented.
In order to keep your dog safe, follow these Animal Humane Society recommendations:
• Ensure that your pet always has access to cold water. In addition, you can:
- Provide ice cubes for your pets to chew on
- Give frozen "Kongsicles" (a Kong stuffed with canned food and then frozen) or frozen food patties
- Wrap ice in bandanas and put it around their necks
- Wet down and freeze towels to give them something cool to lie on
• Never leave your pet unattended in the car. Cracked windows won't protect your pet from overheating or suffering heat stroke on hot days.
• Limit exercise to morning or evening hours. Take extra care with older pets, overweight pets and short nosed dogs.
• Bring your pets inside when possible. If your dog must be left outside, leave him in the shade with plenty of fresh, cool water or even a kiddie pool filled with water.
• Keep in mind that asphalt gets very hot and can burn your pet's paws. If the ground is too hot for you to comfortably go barefoot, it is too hot for your dog.
• Keep your pet well groomed. A matted coat traps in heat. Resist the temptation to shave off your pet's hair in an effort to keep him cool. Your pet's coat will protect him from getting sunburned.
• As soon as you see any signs of heat stroke, immerse your pet in cool water or wet him with a garden hose then get him/her to a veterinarian immediately. Signs include:
- Excessive panting or drooling
- Anxious or staring expression