FAST FACTS Heat Stroke: Causes & Symptoms

Greyhound-in-pool-300x225Heat stroke is a severe increase in body temperature above the average range that the body is unable to handle. Heatstroke can result in multiple-organ failure and possible death within 15 minutes.

FACTORS CONTRIBUTING TO HEAT STROKE

  • Excessive heat and humidity
  • Overexertion / excessive exercise, especially in hot conditions
  • Being left in a hot car or confined to areas of concrete/asphalt
  • Heart or lung disease / breed-specific complications
  • Lack of shade and fresh drinking water
  • History of heat stroke

SYMPTOMS OF HEAT STROKE

  • Heavy panting
  • Lack of coordination / muscle tremors
  • Excessive thirst, thick saliva
  • Dark tongue and lips
  • Restlessness or lethargy
  • Vomiting and diarrhea
  • Seizures
  • Coma

TREATMENT

  • Move pet to cool environment immediately
  • Pour water (not ice water) over body and paws or immerse if possible
  • Apply cool packs to groin area
  • Call your veterinarian or emergency hospital immediately; breathing problems can occur; kidney failure, irregular heartbeat and seizures can occur hours or days later