Australian summers are harsh and this one is no exception!
So what do we need to do to keep our dogs safe from sunburns and heat strokes?
We all know the slip, slop, slap message and it could also be beneficial for our four legged friends.
Is my breed at risk?
Hairless dogs, white-and-pink skinned pets, white and light-haired pets and short and thin-haired pets are particularly susceptible and will need sun protection.
Breeds such as Pitbulls, Greyhounds and Chinese Crested are especially susceptible.
Never use human sunscreen as it is toxic for dogs. Check out the zinc free , safe-to-lick Dr Zoo sunscreen.
How to recognize a sunburn and what to do?
The signs are similar to those of humans. The skin will be red, inflamed and feel hot to the touch. There may also be flaking.
If you notice sun burn, keep your dog away from the sun and apply aloe Vera gel: it is safe for your dog to lick. Seek a special ointment from your vet if the burn is extensive.
How to avoid and manage heat strokes?
Heat strokes can happen very quickly and have fatal consequences.
Short nosed breeds or dogs that are obese, have heart disease or respiratory disease are at higher risk.
Signs of heat stroke are excessive panting, fatigue, weakness, diarrhea, vomiting, muscle spasms and tremor, delirium, collapsing and lying down.
If you suspect your dog has a heat stroke, wrap him/her in a tepid to cool wet towel and direct a fan on the dog. Do not use ice water. Contact your vet as it can quickly turn into a critical condition.
Avoid exercising your dog on hot and humid days and do not leave your dog in the car, even with the windows down, as the temperature can increase very quickly.
Remember: Provide ample shade spots for your dog, use sunscreen protection on nose and ears if you have to go on walks or at the beach, have fresh water available at all times- drop a few frozen berries in the bowl to encourage drinking and make it fun!
The Doggy Grub blog is dedicated to help dogs and their owners achieve happier, healthier lives, changing the way we feed our dogs one bowl at a time! If you would like to know more about our fresh food head to Doggy Grub