Pet Health Hospital

Dr. B discusses the pet topic of the week — heat stroke

Dr. B discusses the pet topic of the week — heat stroke 

The is Dr. Mark Beerenstrauch from Pet Health and Lifetime Care Center on Desert Inn with the Pet Health topic of the week – Heat Stroke.

Heat stoke can occur when a pet’s body temperatures rises above 104 degrees F.  Heat stroke usually involves exposure to high environmental temperatures and can be precipitated by various medical conditions.

Heat stroke generally falls into two categories.   Pets that have a decreased ability to dissipate heat and pets that have increased heat production.

A decreased ability to dissipate heat in pets can be caused by external factors such as a sudden exposure to high environmental temperatures.   A common condition that causes this is a pet being left in a parked car.   There can also be internal factors that cause a decrease in a pet’s ability to dissipate heat such as upper airway diseases in brachycephalic breeds such as the pug, bulldog, and Boston terriers.

An increase in the heat production of a pet can be caused by internal or external factors including ingestion of macadamia nuts.

The clinical signs of heat stroke will vary depending on the degree and duration of the temperature elevation but some early things that you can look for in your pet include:

Excessive Panting

Your pet may be mentally dull or seem off balance.

Your pet’s breathing may be noisy or seem labored.

Delayed signs can also develop 3-5 days after an apparent recovery that include things such as kidney and liver failure, sepsis, bleeding abnormalities and heart arrhythmias.

Heat stroke is an emergency and your pet should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.   The goals of treatment are to lower body temperature, treat shock and organ damage, and correct any precipitating or contributing factors.

Aggressive therapy is continued until the body temperature begins to decrease and the pet becomes stable.

Prognosis for heat stroke depends on the severity and duration of hyperthermia and presence of any secondary organ failure.

If you have any questions about heat stroke or would like to schedule a lifetime care exam for your pet – please give us a call at 702-910-4500.

You can also text us by using text@pethealthhospital.com as a mobile contact number.

We have both referral and new patient lifetime care rewards and second opinions are always free.