Best Friends Pet Clinic

1820 Wheeler Avenue
Fort Smith, AR 72901



We are in the hottest part of the summer right now. Heat Exhaustion and Heat Stroke are very serious and can be fatal to your pet if not treated immediately.

Heat exhaustion occurs when the body temperature rises above normal (Normal being 101.0 - 102.5). If a temperature continues to rise, and reaches 106, your dog is in danger of heat stroke. In cats, 105 is the temp that is the danger zone. (Normal in cats is 100-102)

A heat stroke can cause organs to begin to shut down and the heart could stop.

Prevention is the best way to keep your pet safe- keep them in a cool area (preferably inside) during high temps/heat indexes. If you must leave them outside, be sure they have adequate cool water and shade/shelter.

Signs of heat exhaustion, or overheating, (CATS AND DOGS) are : Less responsive to commands,excessive panting, they may collapse, have convulsions, vomiting, diarrhea,and their gums or tongue could turn blue or bright red. CATS may also be restless and/or groom excessively.

Signs of potential heat stroke include (CATS AND DOGS) : glazed eyes, excessive drooling, rapid heart rate, dizziness, lack of coordination, fever, lethargy, loss of consciousness.

Dogs that are flat faced (shih-tzu, pugs, boxers, bulldogs), very young or very old dogs, overweight dogs, and those that suffer from medical conditions that cause difficulty breathing, or heart problems are at higher risk, along with long haired, or thick coated.


What to do if you suspect your pet is overheated: IMMEDIATELY move your pet to a cooler area. If you are near water (such as a lake or baby pool), put your pet in it to let him cool down. If you don't have access to water or a pool, place cool wet cloths or towels on his neck, armpits, and between his hind legs.

You can also wipe his ears and paw pads with cool water. If your pet is willing and able to drink, give him cool water. Do not give ice cubes, as this could lower the body temp too quickly which could lead to shock.

Get your pet to your vet AS SOON AS POSSIBLE! Call ahead,  to let them know you're coming in so they can prepare!