Prevent Heat Illness In Your Puppies

Whether you have indoor or outdoor dogs, they're going to spend some time in the heat this summer. But before you have puppies suffering from heat stress, here are a few ways to prevent a problem before it happens.

* Look for the early signs of heat exhaustion: excessive drooling, increased heart rate, even lack of coordination. Personality changes can also happen.

* Have water readily available. Dogs don't sweat, and panting can leave them parched. A small bowl of fresh water - or an extra large bowl if you have a Great Dane like we do - will really hit the spot.

* Never leave your puppies in the car during the summer months. You've probably seen all the videos of how quickly the inside of a vehicle reaches more than 100 degrees. Just don't do it.

* If you're too hot, they are too. If the pavement is too hot for your feet, it's too hot for theirs. If direct sun is too much for your skin, it's too much for them too. Use some common sense.

* Work in more rest time if your puppies have to be out in the heat. Sit in the shade, stay ultra-hydrated and get into the air conditioning whenever possible.

* Practice your grooming skills. Have long-haired dogs trimmed back for the summer months. Brush your puppies as often as you can so they don't have a lot of extra fur for insulation. Check them over for sunburn and fever blisters.

A few precautionary actions today can keep you out of the vet's office and having more fun outside. Plus, you'll have a happy, healthy dog who's ready to take on the world.

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