The seven dog breeds most at risk of heatstroke in 34C heatwave today – how to spot it and what to do | The Sun

The seven dog breeds most at risk of heatstroke in 34C heatwave today – how to spot it and what to do | The Sun

AS the nation braces for the hottest day of the year, dog owners are unsurprisingly getting very concerned.

With temperatures forecast to hit a sweltering 34C – dogs are at major risk of heatstroke.

It is crucial you know when your dog is experiencing heatstroke – because serious cases can lead to organ damage and even death.

Vet charity the PDSA has now revealed seven breeds that are at particular risk during today's heatwave – and they've shared their top tips on how to spot the signs.

Dog’s noses play a very important part in keeping pooches cool as they release excessbody heat when they breathe out.

It should come as no surprise then that Brachycephalic, aka flat-faced mutts, struggle to release heat this way because of the drastically reduced space they have inside their nose.


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This puts breeds like Pugs and English Bulldogs up to a whopping six and 14 times more likely to develop heatstroke than Labradors.

The other five breeds at risk are the French Bulldog, Dogue de Bordeaux, Pomeranian, Shih Tzu and Boston Terrier.

Spotting the signs of heatstroke are key – and perhaps the most obvious sign is of course heavy panting.

Drooling, foaming at the mouth and bright red gums are other major giveaways your dog is struggling in the heat.

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Meanwhile sluggish and slow movements also highlight your dog has overheated – leaving them weak and vulnerable.

Behaving strangely, confusion and shaking are indicators that you need to act, too.

While in more severe cases of heatstroke – your dog may even vomit, collapse or have a seizure.

So what can you do if you suspect your dog is experiencing heatstroke?

Keep them calm and still and get them indoors or into a shady area immediately.

Provide water, but avoid ice and icy water as this can send your poochinto shock, which will exacerbate the situation.

Place a wet towel under them and contact your vet.

While doing this, you can take a damp towel and slowly wet their extremities: head, feat, ears and fur.

Once cooled, you can start pouring water all over their body.


Of course avoiding the situation altogether is paramount, so it is key to know how to prevent heatstroke in dogs.

Overheating during exercise accounts for 74 percent of all heatstroke cases in dogs – so it is vital you scrap any plans to walk your dog in the baking heat.

Your pooch is at risk even if it's just sitting still outside and not exercising – this accounts for almost 13 percent of heatstroke cases.

And it goes without saying – in no circumstances should you be taking your dog out in the car and leave them in it.

To prevent heatstroke – provide plenty of shade and access to water and don't let them walk on surfaces that are too warm.

And while it may seem obvious, consider getting your dog clipped as the warm weather combined with a heavy coat will be torture for your beloved dog.

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If your dog has a mild case of heatstroke, and they receive treatment quickly, they are likely to make a full recovery.

However, if they become seriously unwell, or their treatment is delayed, they could suffer organ damage or even die.


Your dog could be experiencing heatstroke if it displays the following:

  • Panting
  • Drooling and foaming at the mouth
  • Bright red gums
  • Shaking
  • Weakness and collapse
  • Confusion
  • Vomiting and diarrhoea (sometimes containing blood)
  • Seizures
  • Death


If your dog is experiencing heatstroke, do the following:

  1. Keep them calm and still
  2. Take them indoors or into a shady area
  3. Give them a drink of cold water (not ice, or icy water as this can cause shock)
  4. Contact your vet
  5. Make sure they have plenty of air flowing around them
  6. Put them on top of a wet towel
  7. Using cool (not icy) water* to slowly wet the top of their head, feet, ears and fur
  8. Once they seem a bit cooler, you can start to pour cool water over their body (be careful they don’t inhale any)
  9. If possible, continue cooling your dog on the way to your vet

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