Pet welfare advocates warn families about the dangers high temperatures can pose to animals as the current heat wave in the Pacific Northwest continues.
Multiple dogs died in Vancouver from heatstroke. According to a CTV News Sunday report, one worker at an emergency veterinary hospital had to make a statement regarding the potentially fatal weather condition.
Although some pet owners might assume that heat stroke only affects pets left in cars, Tinille MckenzieWyatt, registered veterinary technologist, told Canadian News that it can also happen in backyards where pets love to relax in the sun.
According to the National Weather Service, temperatures in interior Washington, Oregon, and Idaho have also been affected by the heatwave. They have experienced temperatures ranging from 100 to 110 degrees Fahrenheit.
These temperatures are between 20 and 30 degrees above average, and were dubbed “historic” according to the weather service.
American Humane is the first national humane organization in the country. It issued a press statement Wednesday advising pet owners living in states affected by heatwaves to take extra precautions for their animals.
According to the organization, pet owners should avoid exercising their animals during peak hours. Instead, they recommend mornings and evenings for pets as these are more comfortable.
American Humane strongly discourages outdoor pets being left in cars (even with the windows cracked), and encourages backyard owners to make sure their pets have access to shade and water whenever they are outside.
American Humane recommends that pet owners be familiar with signs of heatstroke. These include excessive panting and dark or bright red gums and tongue, lethargy and seizures.
According to the nonprofit, animals suffering from heatstroke should be treated immediately. Pet owners can temporarily relieve heatstroke symptoms by cooling their pets with a bath, sponge, or hose until they are treated by a veterinarian.
In an email to Fox News, Dr. Robin Ganzert, American Humane’s president and CEO, stated that excessive heat was one of the most common dangers for pets. American Humane is reaching out across all networks to ensure people are taking steps not to expose animals to danger. We urge animal lovers to use these simple tips to keep their best friends healthy, safe and cool.