Preventing Animal Dehydration

With temperatures soaring it's important to remember to keep hydrated.  This intense heat can cause dehydration in people and animals.  Animal Control has some information pet owners need to know to ensure your little friend is healthy all summer long.

"Dogs have to have shade, and they have to have plenty of water."

That's the message Animal Control worker Steve Dodge is telling dog and cat owners when it comes to preventing dehydration.  It's a message Barbie Robertson already follows.

"We always make sure that we provide a great big bowl of water by the water faucet that kind of drips for them, so they always have a constant supply of water.  We also make sure we provide ample shade," said Robertson.

As the proud parent of two dogs, Todd the Beagle, and Kennedy the Chihuahua that never stays still, Barbie knows what this scorching Texas heat can do.

"They'll start to pant which is just a natural way of cooling their systems and their bodies off," said Robertson.

Animal Control says providing an adequate amount of shade can prevent heat related illnesses, but not all shade is ample shade.

"A lot of people don't understand that a dog house to us, Animal Control Department, is not proper shade," said Dodge.

Instead he suggests artificial shade from a tarp that extends through portions of the yard or shade from trees, and supplying daily fresh water can provide that cool relief your pet will want this summer.

"Please don't put water in a hot metal pan out in the middle of the sun, cause all that's doing is heating that water up," said Dodge.

If your pet is severely dehydrated warning signs you should look out for are sunken eyes, a dry mouth, increased heart rate and a lethargic animal.  Those are signs that Barbie Robertson never wants to see in Todd and Kennedy.

"If you're pets are loved as much as our pets our loved you don't want them to ever become dehydrated."

If an animal is dehydrated the easiest way to solve the issue would be to take the animal to a cool area and provide water, sometimes though, it's severe enough that you will need to contact a veterinarian.

If you do come across a dehydrated animal please do not hesitate to contact Animal Control at 761-7824.