Protecting your pup in the dog days of summer, local vet weighs in

KSN Digital Extra

WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The upcoming warmer weather could cause multiple problems for your pups and canine pets. Dehydration, heat strokes, and even burned paw pads are a few of the heat-related illnesses your pup could endure.

Dr. Lacey Diebold, a Veterinarian and Practice Owner of Sweetbriar Veterinary Clinic in Wichita, has many tips and tricks for keeping your pup cool.

“Typically, if the temperature outside is only about 70-degrees, the asphalt temperature on a sunny day could be as much as 150-degrees,” said Dr. Diebold. “I would recommend walking your pets either earlier in the morning before that noon day sun gets out and is really beating down on the pavement, or later in the evening.”

There are precautions you can take if you are deciding rather or not to take your pup on a walk.

“What we usually recommend that people do, if you’re going to walk your dog, is to do a five-second touch test — so if you can put your hand down on the pavement, and you can hold it there for five seconds without getting too hot, then typically it’s safe for your pet to walk on it as well.” said Dr. Diebold.

If the pavement is too hot, Dr. Diebold recommends walking your dog on grassy areas or even taking them to a dog park.

“You’ll definitely want to make sure that your pet’s fully vaccinated and on preventatives so that way they’re not going to pick up any communicable diseases from other pets,” said Dr. Diebold. “But dog parks are a great way where you can just let your dog run free, socialize, interact with other pets, and they can still get that exercise and without having to be on asphalt.”

If your pup has ended up on hot asphalt, such as streets, sidewalks, porches and even decks, it may not be obvious that they have suffered from a burn.

“Some pets are going to have blisters. Some can develop a limp. They might actually get kind of walking on eggshells because just like you or I, a blister is going to be pretty painful,” said Dr. Diebold. “If you do suspect something like that happen, take your pet to the vet. They’re going to be the best ones to be able to diagnose that and give you good treatment options.”

If your pup has suffered from any of these injuries, there are treatment options available.

Dr. Diebold says treatment options include topical antibiotics to keep infections from forming on the blister(s), pain medication to help with any discomfort, and that some bandaging and oral antibiotics can be done as well depending on the severity of the burn.

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