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Keeping your pets safe during hot weather

Remember if it's too hot for you, it's too hot for them.

PORTLAND, Ore. — Hot temperatures can be uncomfortable and dangerous for animals, just like humans. As the Pacific Northwest braces for a record hot weekend of triple-digit temperatures, it's important to remember to also take care of your pets. 

"Any time that it feels hot for you, it is hot for your pets," said Shana O'Marra with DoveLewis Veterinary Emergency Animal Hospital.

She shared some tips to keep your pets safe in hot weather.

Keep pets protected, ideally indoor in air conditioning or in a cool room. If you do take them outside for a walk, make it short and keep their paws off the pavement.

"When the pavement is really hot, they can actually form burns on their paws," said O'Marra. "So a good rule of thumb is to lay your hand on the pavement before you take your pet out.”  

A walk should also come with plenty of water. 

"Pack some extra water not just for yourself but for your dog and honestly other pets that you might come across in case someone else didn’t prepare well.”  

This advice is not just for dogs and cats—she says it applies to any animals spending time outdoors.

"Heat stress can affect all of our pets, so the best thing to do is think about the normal environment for your pet and try to maintain that.” 

Signs of heat stress include excessive panting or salivating, bright red membranes on the tongue or eyes and even seizures.

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