SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – While some petowners leave their pets at home, it’s important to still find ways to keep those pets comfortable during the hot and humid days of summer. The rule of thumb is, if you’re not comfortable with the temperature inside your home, your pet won’t be either. But even when you leave home, it’s important to keep that cool environment for your pet.
Veterinarians see heat stroke as one of the most common problems of pets over the summer.
Andrew Rosenfeld, Veterinary Director of VCA Animal Hospital in Springfield told 22News he gets pets suffering from the summer heat often.
“Once a week at least from it being either heat stroke at home or sometimes in car,” says Rosenfeld.
These damages are done even if your pets are overheating for a just a few minutes.
When animals have heatstoke, their body temperature can reach to 108 degrees. The body temperature of cats and dogs is already 10 degrees higher because of their fur coats. A heat stroke can lead to organ failure and blood clots.
One pet owner told 22News that even when he leaves the house, it’s worth the expense to keep the air conditioning on all day for his dog.
“Usually we keep her in front of the air conditioner or the fan, or we bring her to my parents and she has a little dog pool that she goes in, she loves that,” says Justin Martin of Ludlow.
But for some pet owners who don’t have air conditioning units in their homes, keeping pets comfortable becomes a challenge. If you are leaving you pet at home for multiple hours, there are a few ways to make sure that they do stay cool.
Rosenfeld says they need the necessitites. “The fan is on them, they have plenty of water, even ice cubes in the water would be great as long as they’re not going to swallow the ice cubes whole at first.”
Dr. Rosenfeld also recommends placing your pets in an area where there can be a crossbreeze between windows. Make sure the area is shaded too. This can help keep those air conditioning bills down. Finding ways to keep shade inside and outside your home will give pets a place to relax. These tips are the most recommended to pet owners, since they can apply to a majority of households without draining your wallet when you’re away.
It’s also important to remember that, if you are keeping your pets outside, that they have plenty of shade… hot cement and sidewalks could burn their paws and cause blisters.