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Our companions facing the heat

As soon as our thermometer gets carried away, it is essential to be vigilant for yourself, those around you, but also our pets.

Dogs and cats do not have the same body temperature regulation mechanisms as we do. To evacuate the heat, we sweat, but for them it is a combo between panting and peripheral vasodilation.

It is imperative to be even more vigilant with old, sick animals or certain brachycephalic breeds (such as French bulldogs, English bulldogs or pugs, etc.) because they will ventilate less well. Fiery young people will forget to drink or take care of themselves.

As for the cat, it generally tolerates heat better, taking this resistance from its African ancestor from desert regions.

In order to help them overcome these heat waves, some recommendations are necessary:

A. Adaptation of exit times

Minou side: if he decides to go out, he must then be able to return to cool whenever he sees fit. In which case you can block the cat flap in the middle of the day.

Toutou side: for a city dweller, it is better to go out early in the morning or late at night. Beware of the heat released for the asphalt or manhole covers which can burn their pads! During your daytime outings, remember not to remain stationary for too long.

B. Minimize physical activities

It is imperative not to impose intense physical effort on your animal and not to make it play excessively. With the excitement, he could quickly find himself in the red zone.

Other dogs don’t even want to go for a walk, some don’t move forward and others stop at the border between light and shade so they don’t have to put a paw in the sun… it’s better not to force them to avoid any perilous situation.

If your pet really needs exercise, find a spot with water so he can play while cooling off.

C. A cool interior

If you are not at home and your pet is also there, make sure your interior stays cool (shutters closed, curtains drawn, etc.). If you have a veranda or a loggia, check that your pet is not there.

It is also forbidden to leave your dog alone in a car, even in the shade with the window open for a simple round trip. The passenger compartment can quickly become an oven and cause the death of your companion.

D. Hydration

It is essential to encourage your animal to drink more, in particular by multiplying the water points:

Minou side: cups with a thin layer of water to lap up. As these are sensitive to moving water, you can invest in a water fountain.

Toutou side: bowls of fresh water with why not a few ice cubes.

You can also serve them mash, as it contains 70% humidity compared to 15% for kibble.

E. Refreshing little ideas

You can offer your pet a damp, cool towel; a bag of frozen food taken from the freezer that you can wedge under a cloth; caress it with a moistened glove; use a fogger; wetting the end of its legs; buy a refreshing mat or an above-ground swimming pool; …

F. Watch out for heat stroke…

If your pet has made a major effort outdoors or if he has fallen asleep in direct sunlight, bring him in to cool: he must catch his breath quickly. The panting should stop and her body temperature should drop below 39 degrees. In which case, it will be the beginning of a heat stroke. In this case, you must quickly take him to the veterinarian. Other symptoms may occur such as vomiting, diarrhea, staggering or even convulsions and lead to the death of the animal.

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