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July 30, 2015

Baton Rouge, La. (July 30, 2015) – Heat indices are running into the triple digits these days and Agriculture and Forestry Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M., says if your pets are left outside, make sure they have plenty of water and a shaded area in which to retreat.


“These excessive temps bring new meaning to the dog days of summer. As a veterinarian by profession, I’m asking you to be mindful of heat conditions when animals, including livestock, are outside,” said Strain.


The American Veterinary Medical Association says never leave a pet in a vehicle on warm days. Those temperatures can quickly reach dangerous levels. Pets can succumb to heatstroke easily.


“A dog’s tolerance for extreme temperatures – hot or cold- vary based on their size, body composition, fur coat and their basic health. If a dog seems weak, doesn’t take commands like it normally does, pants harder and drools more, it could be suffering from heat stress,” added Strain.


Livestock such as cattle can also suffer from excessive heat. “A cow will typically find a shaded area if there is one. You’ll sometimes see them standing in a pond. They’re just trying to stay cool like you and me. But if they have nowhere to get some relief from the heat, they are also at risk of heat stress.”