How Do I Know if My Dog Has Heat Stroke in Columbus, OH?

Heat stroke is a very serious health condition that unfortunately affects dogs in Columbus every year during the summer and fall. It is most commonly associated with dogs who are left alone in vehicles, but it can occur in dogs who are left outside unattended with no shade or water on a hot day, as well.

Heat stroke in dogs in Columbus, OH

Common Symptoms of Heat Stroke in Dogs in Columbus, OH

Heat stroke is often deadly, but it doesn’t have to be if it is caught in time. Check out this list of symptoms of heat stroke so you can better recognize when your dog might be suffering from this condition.

Mild Symptoms

Some mild symptoms of dog heat stroke include, but aren’t limited to:

Excessive Drooling and Thirst

One of the first signs of heat stroke in dogs is excessive drooling. This means that your dog may have much more drool than what is normal for him.

Along with this, you will likely also see excessive thirst. If your dog is able to drink enough water and get into a cool location at this stage, he is likely to be okay.

Labored Breathing and Panting

Labored breathing and panting usually go hand in hand as well. They are on the moderate side of the mild symptoms of heat stroke. You can tell if your dog’s breathing is labored even if he isn’t panting by watching his sides; they will move in and out visibly when he is having trouble breathing easily.

This is a more concerning symptom and should be closely monitored. However, once again, if your dog is allowed to cool down and rehydrate in time, he will likely be okay after suffering from this symptom as well. If you notice the labored breathing continuing even after your dog has had water, take him to the veterinarian in Columbus, OH.

Moderate Symptoms

More moderate symptoms of heat stroke in dogs are:

Increased Body Temperature

Of course, if your dog is overheating due to heat stroke, he is going to have an increased body temperature as well. You may not want to check your dog’s temperature, or you may be unable to; however, you can usually tell by feeling his nose, the insides of his ears, and his paw pads if he is overheating.

Place cool rags on his feet to help him cool down as much as possible while you prepare to take your dog to the emergency vet in Columbus. Do not use cold or ice water, as this can cause shock if they are unstable.

Severe Symptoms

The severe symptoms of heat stroke that you need to watch out for in your dog are:

Discoloration of the Gums

Check your dog’s gums. If they are not the same color they usually are, then he needs to go to the emergency vet right away. Gums may turn white, very pale pink, very dark red, blue, or black. Any of these changes signifies that your dog is not getting enough oxygen and is in a very dangerous situation.

Some dogs who reach this point may not survive. However, if you act quickly and take your dog to the emergency vet the moment you notice this symptom, he will have a better chance of coming through the heat stroke successfully.

Collapse or Seizure

The final symptoms of heat stroke in dogs, and the most severe as well, are collapse and seizure. Dogs may collapse and lose consciousness when heat stroke has reached a serious level. They may be unable to rouse, or if they do wake up, they may be confused and very lethargic.

Dogs may also have seizures at this stage. Seizures in dogs who are showing other signs of heat stroke signify a very serious condition that must be responded to immediately. If your dog suffers from a seizure and you suspect heat stroke, there is no time to waste in getting him to the emergency vet in Columbus.

Contact Your Vet in Columbus, OH Right Away if Your Dog is Experiencing Heat Stroke

If you think there is any risk that your dog could be suffering from heat stroke, don’t wait. Take him to the vet right away for a complete, accurate diagnosis and treatment. The sooner you act, the more likely you will be to save your dog’s life.

If your dog has heat stroke, or if you’re looking for more information on if your pet may be suffering from this condition, contact our team at North Kenny Veterinary Hospital today by scheduling an appointment or calling us at (614) 451-1204. Our skilled and compassionate veterinarians will help make sure your dog receives the care they need, because their health is always our top priority.

And remember, you should never leave your dog in a locked car for even just a few minutes. Even if you think the weather feels comfortable to you, it can quickly reach temperatures that are dangerous or even deadly for a dog inside the car. Prevent heat stroke by never leaving a dog unattended in a vehicle.

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About North Kenny Veterinary Hospital

North Kenny Veterinary Hospital has been serving Columbus, OH pet families with exceptional veterinary medicine since the 1950s. We put a strong emphasis on preventive medicine as well as low-stress handling to help pets have a more pleasant veterinary experience. We use Fear Free techniques for every cat and dog to help reduce their anxiety and calm their nerves.

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