Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Hot Dogs

I've been somewhat irritated by Caitlin's habit of repeatedly soaking her entire head in the water bowls at every opportunity and then rolling around in the mud. I take her home looking like the Swamp Thing almost every single day.
Even a muddy Caitlin is cuter than this!
I'm wrong to be irritated (and Rob is wrong that Caitlin isn't smart). Caitlin is keeping herself cool, which is something every smart dog should do in warm weather.

I wasn't able to find out how many dogs die every summer from heat stroke. The best guesses are that the numbers are in the thousands. No one really keeps track.

One fairly recent death in San Diego was of a greyhound who died in August of last year. The owner took the dog for a walk, not thinking there would be a problem, as it was breezy, with a temperature of 76 degrees. Apparently, they didn't recognize the signs of trouble, and they lost their dog.
http://www.greysave.org/hotweather.php

Don't ever, ever, ever, leave your dog in the car, even with the windows open.

A fair number of police dogs die, mostly in cars, every summer. In 2008, a San Diego police officer's Belgian Malinois died after being left in the patrol car for several hours. the officer was charged with a misdemeanor. http://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1998&dat=20080815&id=i4kiAAAAIBAJ&sjid=xqoFAAAAIBAJ&pg=1308,7025189

That poor dog probably died long before the "several hours" he had been left. A car in the sun becomes an oven within 10 to 20 minutes, and a dog can be at death's door within 10 minutes of exhibiting symptoms. Once a dog gets to that point, it is at risk of serious organ damage even if it survives.

Symptoms to watch for are rapid panting, wide eyes, salivating, staggering and weakness. Once the dog collapses, it is in grave danger.

Here are some links that give advice on how to recognize the symptoms and what to do:
http://www.pawprintsthemagazine.com/?p=3969
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/47461038/ns/business-press_releases/t/san-diego-veterinarian-warns-pet-owners-be-vigilant-heatstroke-pets/#.UBdI0LTZKtM
http://www.sdhumane.org/site/PageServer?pagename=Beat_the_Heat

I'm going to be watching all the dogs at Harry Griffen Park a lot more carefully from now on.