Animal charities have sent out a warning to pet owners across Britain as the country braces itself for a 33C heatwave.
Caution has been urged to pet owners, in particular, dog owners, who are intending to take their four-legged friend for a walk this week, as the scorching heat poses a threat to animals walking on pavements and other hot surfaces.
The warning comes after a picture was shared on social media of one owner’s dog, who’s paws were covered with blisters as a result of the recent weather.
Twitter account, Zucchinisaurus posted a PSA which read:
Before you take your dog for a walk in hot weather, take off your shoes/socks and stand on the pavement. If it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for your dog!
Today, (July 24), is set to be another record breaking day for soaring temperatures in parts of the UK, with Santon Downham, Suffolk, expected to experience temperatures of 33.3C.
However, it’s thought these records will be broken this week as forecasters are expecting it to go to 35C and above.
As a result, pet owners are being urged to keep their pets out of the sun and off the streets, as surfaces could soon reach a melting point, according to The Sun.
At the beginning of July, owners in the UK were already warned to look out for their canine companions.
While we may be basking in the scorching hot weather we tend to forget about the well being of our furry companions. This comes after a ‘fit and healthy’ dog died after going out for a walk in the north-west of England last month (June 28th).
The poor pooch died of heatstroke after going out for a walk in temperatures as high as 21c.
The RSPCA received a total of 729 calls last week, from people concerned about animals who’d been left in stuffy conditions, including locked cars.
RSPCA spokesman for the Altrincham, Cheshire branch said:
This morning we have been informed that yesterday a local dog died of heat stroke after being taken on a walk at 9am when the temperature was 21 degrees. The dog was five-years-old and otherwise fit and healthy.
Despite lots of warnings about the heat we still see dogs being walked to the shops, on the school run, or as soon as owners get in from work.
We do understand the crucial nature of walking your dog, however please bear in mind that walking in high temperatures can cause serious and irreversible damage, and in some cases death.
Yesterday, the high for the day was at 4pm but this is when most of the dogs we spotted were out and about. It doesn’t matter if your dog is white, young, not a bull breed or ‘used to the heat’. Please be mindful of their needs.
In the meantime, please look out for signs of heat stroke.
According to the RSPCA’s information website, if you see a dog in a car suffering, you should dial 999 as they could soon lose consciousness and experience internal organ failure.
Tell-tale signs of heatstroke in a dog include heavy panting, excessive drooling, appearing lethargic, drowsy or disorientated, collapsing and/or vomiting.
The RSPCA also point out, if a dog becomes too hot and cannot reduce their body temperature via panting, they’ll develop heatstroke which can be fatal.
If they do show signs of heatstroke, they advise you to move them to a cool, shaded area and contact a vet immediately.
Furthermore, some dogs are more susceptible to heatstroke than others as factors such as age, the thickness of coats or dogs with flat faces (like pugs and bulldogs) play a part in the matter. Also, dogs with certain diseases or on medication are at risk.
To give your dog the best chance of survival from heatstroke you need to gradually lower their body temperature.
There are a number of ways to do this such as; moving them to a cool, shaded area, immediately dousing the dog with cool (not cold) water to avoid shock, you can also use wet towels or place him/her in the breeze of a fan. Giving the dog small amounts of water to drink will help too.
For more information head over to the RSPCA website by clicking here.
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