Heatstroke in Bulldogs

Bulldogs are capable of getting overheated quickly due to their short-noses and short breathing system. Due to the shorter airway there is less of a possibility to cool the air when inhaled. Many pet-parents will be surprised at how quickly their fur-baby gets affected by the heat. Luckily there are preventative measures a pet-parent can take to prevent this from happening to their fur-baby. Being aware of the symptoms and causes is the first step to prevention.

Causes

Exposure to hot temperatures for a long period of time is the number one cause of heatstroke. Other causes include being left in a hot car, strenuous exercise in hot weather, dehydration, suffering from a high fever and being confined or left outdoors in the heat with no access to water or shade.

Symptoms

Heatstroke symptoms may appear gradually or suddenly depending on the situation. If you notice your fur-kid experiencing symptoms such as heavy panting, thick saliva, bright red tongue, vomiting, unsteadiness, bloody diarrhea, unusual noises coming from the throat, collapse, seizure or coma, seek medical attention immediately.

Treatment

If you notice your fur-kid is becoming too hot in their environment, immediately seek a cool place with air conditioning. Go indoors or if you are at a park, you can go inside your car and put the air conditioner on to cool your pup down. Always provide plenty of water at all times. Many pet parents carry bottles of water with them and a portable dog bowl. If your fur-kid is not cooling down and his symptoms are increasing, bring him to the veterinarian office or the local animal hospital as an emergency situation. The veterinarian will provide the proper treatment for the level of heatstroke your fur-kid is experiencing.

Prevention

Just because Bullies are at risk for experiencing heatstroke, doesn’t mean they can’t have summer fun. Preventative measures include taking walks early in the morning or late in the evening when temperatures are cooler, limiting outdoor daily exercise to short increments of 10 minutes at a time, always providing access to shade and water, using the air conditioner in the car and playing in kiddie pools and sprinklers in the yard. All of these measures will help limit the risk of heatstroke in your precious little Bulldog.

Extreme heatstroke is associated with laryngeal edema, which seriously affects breathing and may require an injection of cortisone or an emergency tracheostomy. Due to Bullies having short airway passages, they are more likely to experience this more than other breeds that have longer passages. Other consequences from extreme heatstroke include irregular heartbeat, spontaneous bleeding, kidney failure and hyperthermia.

It is highly important to take preventative measures for you fur-kid. Pet parents should observe their fur-kids behavior and physical signs when being exposed to hot weather. Seeking medical attention at the first sign of symptoms is essential to getting the condition under control and preventing it from becoming increasingly worse. Always keep your veterinarian office and local animal hospital contact phone number handy. This will help alert the medical staff that you are on your way and explain your pup’s symptoms so they can be ready when you arrive. Heatstroke is preventable, remember to keep your fur-kid cool and happy during those hot summer days.