Back to Blog

Heat Stroke Symptoms in Dogs

family-footerUnderstanding the signs and symptoms of heat stroke and heat exhaustion in your dog can be lifesaving as the temperature continues to increase in Maryland. Heat stroke is a very serious condition that requires immediate medical attention, so as soon as your dog is exhibiting the symptoms, action needs to be taken. Know what to look for and how to help prevent heat stroke and heat exhaustion in your dog.

If your dog is exhibiting signs of heat stroke, call Germantown Vet immediately at (240) 252-7467.

Signs of Heat Stroke for Your Dog

Your dog doesn’t sweat through his or her skin like humans do—dogs primarily release heat by panting and through the pads of their feet. That means it’s much more difficult for your dog to cool down, and the longer they spend in the sun, the more likely they are to experience the serious effects of heat stroke or heat exhaustion. Some heat stroke symptoms in dogs to look out for include:

  • A body temperature exceeding 104 degrees
  • Excessive, prolonged, or recurrent panting
  • Dark red tongue and/or gums
  • Sticky or dry tongue and/or gums
  • Thick saliva
  • Froth at the mouth
  • Staggering when walking and/or appearing disoriented
  • Unwilling or unable to get up
  • Elevated heart rate
  • Vomiting and diarrhea
  • Collapsing or loss of consciousness

Take Action Immediately

If your dog is exhibiting any of the heat stroke symptoms listed above, you need to take action immediately!

  1. Get your dog out of the sun right away! Move inside into air conditioning if possible.
  2. Start cooling your dog down with cool (not cold) water. Soak wash clothes in cool water and put them on your dog’s paws and around his or her neck.
  3. Give your dog small amounts of water or ice cubes to lick.
  4. Visit a professional veterinarian right away—if it isn’t normal operating hours, find an emergency vet immediately.

It’s important to remember to never use ice or ice water when attempting to cool your dog from the effects of heat stroke because this can cause the blood vessels to constrict and cause other health problems.

Other Summertime Tips for Dog Owners

Here are some other great hot weather tips for dog owners to help keep your pup cool and comfortable all summer long:

  • If it’s too hot for your feet, it’s too hot for your dog’s paws—this includes pavement, sidewalks, and sand!
  • Your dog is going to drink more water when it’s hot, so keep refilling the bowl.
  • Make sure there are a lot of ways for your dog to stay cool: shade, baby pools, etc.
  • Never, ever leave your dog in the car during the summer.
  • Take your walks in the early morning or in the evening when the temperatures are a little more bearable.
  • Don’t leave your dog alone outside for extended periods of time.
  • Limit your pet’s exercise on hot days.

Visit Germantown Vet Immediately If Your Dog Is Showing Signs of Heat Stroke

If your dog is exhibiting signs of heat stroke, bring him or her to Germantown Vet immediately for treatment. Heat stroke is a dangerous and potentially fatal condition, so it’s absolutely essential that you bring your dog to a vet right away! Visit our animal hospital in Germantown today for treatment!

Our Promotions

Need Help With A New Pet?

Throw Us A Bone!

Help New Pet

Montgomery County’s

Most Trusted Animal Hospital

Bethesda | Clarksburg | Frederick | Gaithersburg | Germantown | Potomac | Rockville | Silver Spring

Bethesda | Clarksburg | Frederick
Gaithersburg | Germantown | Potomac
Rockville | Silver Spring

Learn More