Does My Dog Have Heatstroke?

heatstroke pets albuquerque

Heatstroke is not something to take lightly. It is sizzling hot in Albuquerque and that could put your dog in danger. heatstroke pets albuquerqueHeatstroke can not only cause immediate and mild discomfort, but can cause brain damage and even death.  Make sure you know the signs of heatstroke.

One of the reasons dogs get heatstroke is because they don’t sweat out their excess body heat like people do. The biggest way your

Signs of Heatstroke in Dogs

  • Excessive or loud panting
  • Extreme thirst
  • Disorientation
  • Fast, noisy breathing
  • Collapsing
  • Seizures
  • Bright red tongue
  • Pale guyms
  • Thick saliva
  • Increased heart rate
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • Coma

Dogs will often not stop retrieving if they are over heating, so it is up to their humans to make sure they are not overheating. You need to watch your dog closely for these signs.

Best Ways to Treat Heatstroke

Heatstroke should always be taken seriously.

  • Remove your dog from heat immediately. If possible move them inside to an air conditioned area, or at least a shaded area with good airflow.
  • Restrict their activity so they don’t continue to heat up.
  • Give your dog cool, or room temperature, water in small amounts. If he won’t drink it just apply some to his lips, gums and tongue. If you dog refuses the water, you can use cool or room temperature beef or chicken broth. If you r dog cannot drink the water on his own you can try squeezing some from a facecloth or clean towel.
  • Cool your dog down physically with water. DO NOT dunk your dog in a big pool or bath full of water. You do not want to cool them down too fast as this can cause other medical issues. Using a hose, at a reduced pressure, to spray her down will help slowly cool her down
  • DO NOT give your dog ice water or cool down with ice at all, or even really cold water. This can slow down the cooling process and cause other problems.
  • Wet a towel and place it between her back legs and in her armpits. This will help cool her down quickly but safely.
  • Put rubbing alcohol on a cotton ball and apply it to the pads of his feet. Dogs release heat from their pads. Rubbing them with rubbing alcohol can draw out some of their heat. Do not use too much as it can be harmful if your dog ingests.
  • Place your dog on a cool tile floor if possible.
  • Do not put them in a crate. Your dog needs to be able to get good air circulation and you do not want to trap any heat.
  • Place cool, damp towels over your dog and let them sit with a fan blowing over their body.
  • CALL THE VET! Even if you dog seems to be cooling down and is doing ok, you must call your Albuquerque vet. There can be a lot of consequences of heatstroke and your dog will likely need to be evaluated quickly.

 

 

Vaccines for my dogs: What does he need?

Dog vaccinations

Dog vaccinations
It is the start of summer and your dog is likely to come into contact with other dogs as you go out on hikes or play in the park. Making sure your dog is up to date with vaccines will protect your pet against serious illness and fatal diseases. A vaccination essentially imitates the virus or bacteria that it is protecting against; this then prepares your dog’s body to successfully fight off that same virus and bacteria should it strike.

When To Vaccinate

I would recommend that you contact your Albuquerque vet for advice on the types of vaccinations your dog needs and how often they need them. Although generally speaking puppies should be vaccinated at about eight weeks, or as soon as you get your new pet home. This is because for the first few weeks of their lives their mother’s milk will protect them from infection. Puppies are usually given their vaccinations along with a series of other injections to help their immune system.

Once your dog has been vaccinated they will require regular booster vaccinations. All good veterinary practices will provide you with a record of all the vaccinations and boosters that your dog has received. They will also inform you of when your pet is due back for their next booster, mine contacts me by text message but yours may call or mail you.

Diseases Vaccinated Against

Canine Parvovirus – This is a very contagious viral disease which is potentially fatal. It can be spread by ingesting infected feces. Some dogs will show no signs or symptoms but symptoms may include fever, vomiting and diarrhea.

Infectious Canine Hepatitis – This contagious viral disease is seen throughout the world. It can cause liver and kidney damage but rarely results in death. It is spread through ingesting infected saliva, urine or faeces. Symptoms can include fever, going off their dog food, thirst, depression, coughing and a tender abdomen.

Canine Distemper – This is a viral disease and is highly contagious as it is an airborne infection and affects the respiratory, gastrointestinal and nervous systems. The first stage of this disease is a fever including sneezing and coughing. Other symptoms which can develop include vomiting, diarrhea, depression and loss of appetite.

Canine Infectious Tracheobronchitis – This will be more commonly known to dog owners as Kennel cough. This is a highly contagious respiratory disease which causes inflammation of the trachea and bronchi. It is generally a mild disease and not fatal but can be dangerous to puppies and pregnant bitches. It can be caused by a variety of infections including bordetella bronchiseptica and parainfluenza virus. It essentially, as the name suggests, is passed on from one dog to another in a kennel type situation. The most common symptom is a dry hacking cough but may be accompanied by watery nasal discharge and retching.

Bring your dog into Vetco to our daily walk-in shot clinics to get your dogs vaccinated. Make sure you look at our promotions page to get discounts on vaccines.

Ehrlichiosis: A Dangerous Tick Disease

Ehrlichia tick disease

Ehrlichia tick diseaseIt is summer and you are likely outside a lot more, and so is your dog and possibly your cat. This means that your dog or cat is at a much higher likelihood of getting ticks. Beyond being gross, ticks also carry disease such as Ehrlichiosis. Yes, this is a tick disease that affects both dogs and cats.

Ehrlichiosis is a disease spread by ticks that cause some very serious issues. It can take 2-4 weeks after being bitten by an infected tick to start seeing signs of infection. Your dog may get a fever, loss of appetitive, and lethargy. It can cause thrombocytopenia which means your dog doesn’t have enough platelets in his blood. This means he can have bleeding into his body tissue, bruising, his blood will clot more slowly. This disease can cause bone marrow suppression as well.

Dogs with ehrlichiosis can develop an acute infection that starts with fever, appetite loss and lethargy. Two to four weeks after experiencing the bite of an infected tick, a subclinical infection can set in, causing thrombocytopenia. That $5 word means that the dog doesn’t have enough platelets in his blood. When that happens, he can experience bleeding into body tissues (known as petechiae) and bruising. His blood may clot more slowly than normal after an injury. Bone marrow suppression can result from chronic Ehrlichia spp. (the “spp.” refers to all species of this type of bacteria) infection. It can appear months to years after a tick bite.

Cats with ehrlichiosis have many of the same signs as dogs, but they may also have weight loss, joint pain, vomiting, and diarrhea.

How you get infected with Ehrlichiosis

Dogs and cats get infected with Ehrlichia by being bitten by an infected tick. The tick does not need to be on your pet for very long to infect them. In as few as 3-6 hours your pet could contract the disease from a tick.

Dogs (and cats) become infected with Ehrlichia spp. when infected ticks feed on them, injecting the bacteria into their blood by deeply burying their mouthparts into the skin. Nasty!

Treatment

Once your pet has been diagnosed, which is done through a blood test, with Ehrlichia they can be treated with antibiotics. In sever cases they may need blood transfusions. Thankfully dogs and cats respond quickly to treatment, even if your pet has had it for a long time. Your vet will likely want to do follow up blood work 3 to 6 months after the initial treatment.

The good thing is that pets cannot spread the disease to humans.

 

Prevention is the best treatment, because even though the disease can be treated with antibiotics, depending on the complications your pet had from the disease, you may have some other long term issues to deal with.  It is easy to keep ticks off your cat or dog with Frontline flea and tick treatment. It is a once a month topical treatment that goes on the back of their neck. It will kill any existing fleas or ticks, including their eggs, as well as prevent any from getting on your pet. Albuquerque has both fleas and ticks and these can be a big problem and cause a lot of health issues in your pet. Make sure to drop by Albuquerque Vetco to stock up on your Frontline Flea and Tick prevention.