SEVERE HEAT RISK TO UK’S PETS
UK pets are at ‘severe’ risk As temperatures in the UK continue to hit record levels, the veterinary team at Vital Pet Health have issued a warning to owners that their pets are at severe risk of health problems due to heat related issues. Vets across the country are already seeing large numbers of animals who are presenting in a critical condition and even dying from heat related illnesses.
The vet team have advised owners that heat related issues can occur at any time but the risks massively increase when temperatures reach 26 degrees C for prolonged periods of time.
Vet Paul Manktelow appeared this week on Talk radio to warn pet owners of the steps they need to take in such extreme conditions.
“Whilst this unprecedented weather is great for some, it poses potential risks for others. Our pets in the UK are simply not ” accustomed to prolonged days of extreme heat and some of them just can’t cope. It’s really important that owners take the necessary steps to ensure their pet’s safety”
Here are some top tips from the vet team here at Vital Pet Health:
• Do not walk your dogs during the hottest part of the day. Stick to gentle walks at dawn and dusk when temperatures are lower.
• Avoid tarmac and concrete surfaces as pads can become blistered in the heat of the midday sun
• Take extra precautions with pets who are obese, old or may have physical attributes that reduce their ability to cool down (eg. Flat faced dog breeds)
• Give your dog that overdue haircut-a thick fur coat is the last thing they need.
• Keep cats indoors until late evening wherever possible especially if they are known to ‘sunbathe’
• Apply sunblock to ears, nose and sparse areas of fur. Particularly pets have white fur, they are more likely to burn and are more sensitive to skin cancers.
• Never leave water outside in metal bowls as it can heat it to boiling temperatures!
• Wet food must be removed after an hour if not eaten as it will go rancid quickly and runs the risk of upsetting your pets stomach!
• Move rabbit and guinea pig hutches indoors or in a completely shaded or covered area. Don’t let these small furries into runs in direct sunlight without shade.
• Frozen bottles of water wrapped in a thin towel are great to put in hutches to keep smaller pets cool.
• Move the cages of indoor pets away from windows and direct sunlight
• Watch those water bowls and keep them topped up and replenished regularly!
Finally, if you are worried about heat related illness then treat this as an emergency and seek veterinary advice immediately:
Signs of heatstroke in dogs:
• Excessive panting
• Wobbling on legs
“This feature came to you on behalf of our very own pet expert Paul Manktelow. Paul is our lead Vet at Vital Pet Health who has a wealth of knowledge and experience from his extensive professional career and media involvement.”