Hotter Weather and Pets - Signs and Symptoms to Look Out For

pet ultrasounds

Humans react to hot weather in the same way pets do. However, pets only have some sweat glands on their paws and noses, which are not adequate to cool them down. This is why pets resort to external cooling and panting to help regulate their temperature.

You should recognize alarming signs when your pet could be experiencing heat-related issues. When your pet has a temperature of 103 degrees Fahrenheit or above, it is higher than normal. This can lead to heatstroke or exhaustion. If temperatures rise higher than this, it could be fatal to your pet. To react to such a situation effectively, you can lookout for a few of these symptoms in your pet.

Heavy Panting and Difficulty in Breathing

If you notice that your dog is continuously panting or doing so at a faster rate, your pet could be hyperventilating due to excess heat. Pets with flat faces, such as bulldogs or pugs, are more vulnerable to heat exhaustion issues since they cannot efficiently pant. If you notice such a sign, you should hydrate and cool your pet.

A Rapid Pulse

An easy way to know if your pet is getting negative effects from hot weather is to take your pet’s pulse. You can do this by placing your hand on their chest near the front elbow joint and if their pulse is higher than normal, it could mean that they are experiencing overheating. However, the size of your dog makes a difference to this factor.


If your pet has noticeable tiredness, sunken eyes, uncontrollable panting, and a dry nose, it could mean that your pet has overheating issues. These symptoms coincide with signs of a fever but could also be a result of exposure to hot weather. In addition, if your pet does not pass urine regularly, it could be a sign of dehydration.

Other Signs and Factors to Consider

If you notice your pet has excessive weakness or lethargy during hot weather, it is not a good sign. You may notice them having longer naps or having difficulty walking, or standing up. In some instances, overheating could lead to muscle tremors, manifesting themselves in your pet as shaking and shivering.

  • Beware of Any Hot Environment – The most obvious sign that your pet could experience a heat-related problem is by being aware of the environment you put your pet in. It is important to be vigilant with your pet at all times and places. If you leave your pet in your car without cracking a window on a hot and sunny day, heat exhaustion is likely to occur.

  • Nature of Your Pet – Pets with thick fur or more adapted to cold weather are more susceptible to overheating in hot weather. Also, if your pet is overweight or has a health condition, he or she has a higher chance of suffering from heat-related conditions during hot weather.

It is imperative to look out for these signs if you are a pet owner. It is common for these signs to fade away if you hydrate or take your pet to a cooler environment. However, if these symptoms persist, prioritize taking your pet to a specialist.

If you want to know how to take good care of your pets during the warm summer days, visit Bridge Park Animal Hospital at our offices in Johns Creek, Georgia. You can also call (404) 369-5291 to book an appointment today.