Protect Your Pets From Heat

The heat is brutal enough – try doing it with a fur coat on. That's the reality for our canine (and kitty) companions. Add to the fact that animals can't sweat and it could mean real problems – including heat stroke – for your pets. There are things you can do to help them out.

Every year, Wichita Falls Animal Control writes tickets to many people who leave animals in hot cars. "They can go into heat stroke really fast and then its a lot of medical, vet care," said Katrena Mitchell, Wichita Falls Animal Services Administrator.

Mitchell says even quick trips can be too much. "The temperature rises within just minutes, like 50 degrees," she said. Leaving an animal in a car is against the law. Violators could be hit was a fine of around $400. That extends to leaving animals in pickup beds.

There are things you can do around your house to make sure that animals survive the scorching Summer. "Make sure they have plenty of shade. The sun moves throughout the day so the shade changes. Make sure they have shade available all day, make sure they have fresh water every day. For dogs that like water, you can get a kiddy pool or a rubber tub of some sorts, put some water in it so they can get in and cool off themselves," said Mitchell.

Your pets have several ways of telling you they may be too hot. There are signs to look for. "They will open mouth pant, they will be lethargic, their gums may be really bright red or maybe really pale," she said.

Once you recognize the symptoms, Mitchell said you need to take action. "They need to come inside, they need to cool off. Don't dunk them in ice cold water but running cool water and then call vet immediately."

Another tip to help your pet is to call your groomer and see what length of coat would suit them well in the Summer.

 Paul Harrop, Newschannel 6