3 ways to help your patients beat the heat
Check out these tips for educating your clients about the dangers of overheated pets, plus strategies for keeping furry companions cool during warmer months.
During these hotter months, more veterinary clinics are treating pets for heatstroke. Clients are flocking outdoors and carrying their animal companions with them on spontaneous beach trips and long picnics. When exposed to prolonged heat, a pet's body temperature can rise to dangerous levels.
To curtail this threat and to help educate owners about the serious consequences of overheating Covetrus—a global animal-health technology, and service company, provided dvm360® with 3 safeguards for keeping your patients, cool, safe, and comfortable during the warmer months.
1. Plan outdoor activities ahead of time
Encourage clients to monitor the daily forecast, heat index, temperatures both inside buildings and outside the home, and the temperatures inside vehicles. If they have second thoughts about whether they should bring their animal outside, advise them to always play it safe and keep them inside.
2. Different pets have individual temperature needs
The heat affects pets differently. It’s important to remind your clients that animals come in a variety of breeds, shapes, sizes, and of course, fur. Not only do you need to be wary of temperature levels, but you must also teach them about conditions that work best for their pet's breed and individual needs. Here are some important heat-related facts to share with your clients:
- Darker-coated animals absorb more heat than those with lighter coats.
- Animals with double coats have a natural layer of insulation to protect them against heat.
- Animals with matted double coats struggle to stay cool. Do not cut the mats away or shave their coat; instead, comb them out as much as possible.
- Single-coated animals can be shaved to be more comfortable.
3. Be proactive
Remind your clients that it’s OK to sacrifice a little fun for their pet’s safety. In addition, provide them with a few tips and tricks for keeping their pets hydrated and cool indoors during the summer including:
- Using fans, misters, air conditioning, etc.
- Warn your clients that hot pavement could be potentially painful for their pets. As a rule of thumb, if the pavement is too hot for their hand, it's definitely too hot for their paw pads.
- Odds are, animals are not going to want to run around when the air is hot and humid. Advise clients to opt for indoor activities to keep the pet entertained and completely cool.
Following these measures not only guarantees the pet's utmost well-being but keeps the stress off both the owner and the veterinary team as well.