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Keeping your pets cool this Summer

As the weather warms up and we all look forward to enjoying the sunshine, it’s important to be aware of the effects the heat can have on our pets.

Pets are unable to cool down by releasing sweat from skin pores like we do.  Cats, dogs and rabbits do sweat a little bit from their pads but if they want to cool down further they pant.  However, this may not be sufficient in hot and humid weather, so it’s up to us to stop them from getting too hot in the first place, and if they do over heat knowing how to treat them.

Staying safe in hot weather

  1. Walk your dog at cooler times of the day, so they don’t overheat and don’t burn their paws on surfaces ie pavements.
  2. Make sure your pet has fresh, clean water at all times. If you do go out for the day with your dog take plenty of water with you.
  3. If animals are kept outside, make sure they have easy access to shade. Take into consideration the movement of the sun over the day.
  4. Pets can get sunburnt, especially those with light coloured or thin coats on exposed areas such as ear tips and noses. Don’t allow your pet to stay out in strong sunlight and speak to your vets about pet-safe sun-creams.
  5. Get your dog a haircut at the start of the summer to keep it cool and groom pets regularly to remove excess hair from coats.
  6. Check rabbits twice a day for dirty bottoms as they are prone to maggot infections (flystrike) in warm weather. There are preparations that you can apply which can help prevent flystrike.


Leave your pet alone in the car on a warm day, even if the window is open, its cloudy outside or you have a sunshield.  The inside car temperature can rise dangerously high within a few minutes and heatstroke is a potentially fatal condition.  Signs of heat stroke include:

  • Heavy panting
  • Excess salivation
  • Lethargy, loss of consciousness and collapse

If you think your pet is suffering from heatstroke, contact your vet immediately.  Move them to a cooler and well ventilated area.  Douse them with cool water or briefly wrap them in water soaked towels.  Do not use freezing cold water or allow their temperature to drop too quickly or so low that they start to shiver.  Allow them to drink cold water, little and often.  Even if your pet recovers, do get them examined by a vet to check there is no long term damage.

We have selection of summer items on sale including cool mats, jackets, water bottles, bandanas and ice-creams.

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Fenton Vets

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