California has been hit by an intense heat wave that is expected to bring extremely high temperatures through Thursday.
Record temperatures of up to 112 degrees were reported in cities like Livermore and San Francisco hit a high of 92 degrees.
Some cities have set up cooling centers to help people stay safe and out of the heat.
However, we cannot forget the furry companions and the dangers they face as the heat wave continues.
Here are some tips for protecting your dogs from these intense temperatures, according to the Humane Society of the United States and the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.
Keep them hydrated
Just like humans, pets can become dehydrated. Make sure you have fresh, clean water available to your pets at all times. Add ice if possible.
Be sure to adjust exercise intensity and duration on hot days. You can take your pets out for a walk or run early in the morning or in the evening when the asphalt is cooler and doesn’t burn your pet’s paws.
Always have water available to prevent your pet from becoming dehydrated.
Watch out for humidity
“It’s important to remember that it’s not just the ambient temperature, but also the humidity that can affect your pet,” says Dr. Barry Kellogg, VMD, of the Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association. “Animals pant to evaporate moisture from their lungs, which draws heat away from their bodies. If the humidity is too high, they are unable to cool themselves and their temperature will skyrocket to dangerous levels, very quickly. “
According to the Humane Society of the United States, pets with white ears are more susceptible to skin cancer, and pets with short noses generally have more difficulty breathing.
The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals also states that flat-faced animals are more susceptible to heat stroke because they cannot pant as effectively.
Don’t leave your pet in the car
Even if you leave the windows down, a car can get much hotter than you think. According to the ASPCA, a car’s interior can go from 85 to 120 degrees in just 30 minutes.
It is illegal in some states to leave your pet inside your vehicle and you could be fined or even charged with a misdemeanor.
Watch for signs of heatstroke
If not cared for properly, pets can suffer from heat stroke. Signs include heavy panting, glassy eyes, rapid heartbeat, labored breathing, excessive thirst, lethargy, fever, dizziness, lack of coordination, profuse salivation, vomiting, dark red tongue or purple, convulsions and loss of consciousness.
What to do in case of heat stroke
The Humane Society of the United States recommends moving the animal to a shady or air-conditioned area, applying ice packs or cold towels to its head, neck, and chest, or running cool water over it .
Take your pet straight to a veterinarian.
Prepare for power outages and wildfires
California is unfortunately prone to power outages and wildfires during fire season and heat waves. Be sure to plan for emergencies and create a disaster kit for your pet.
The Humane Society of the United States recommends:
- Make sure your pets are microchipped and wear collars with up-to-date contact information
- Find a trusted neighbour, friend or family member and give them a key in case of an emergency if you’re not home
- Make sure pets are up to date on their vaccinations as some veterinarians, hotels and pet boarding houses require vaccination records
- Contact hotels and motels outside your immediate area to find out if they allow pets if you need to go in an emergency
- Make a list of boarding schools and veterinary offices that may be able to house animals in the event of disasters and emergencies
If you evacuate, bring your pet
If it’s not safe for you, it’s not safe for your pets, says the Humane Society of the United States.
Emergencies are unpredictable and you have no way of knowing for sure how long you will be kept out of your home and whether you will be allowed to return.
If you are forced to leave your home due to loss of power, take your pets with you to a pet-friendly hotel while following public health guidelines, or check to see if your local emergency management office has open a cooling system or warming centers in the area.
Make a Pet Disaster Kit
Make sure you have the following items:
- Food and water for at least five days for each animal
- Medications and medical records
- A pet first aid kit that includes a pet first aid book, gauze, tape, pet shampoo, tweezers, antibiotic ointment, powder styptic (for small wounds) and activated charcoal (for exposure to poisons). first aid kits
- Bags to collect your animals’ droppings. If you have cats, make sure you have a litter box, litter box, and litter scoop
- Heavy-duty leashes, harnesses and secure carriers to transport pets safely
- Current photos of you with your pets to help others identify them in case you and your pets become separated
- Written information about your pets’ feeding schedules, medical conditions, and behavioral issues, as well as the name and number of your veterinarian in case you need to board your pets or place them with foster families. ‘welcome
- A favorite toy for comfort and a familiar blanket for warmth