LOCAL vets have given the region paws for thought as the heat looks set to return with a vengeance.
It might be “commonsense”, but Tamworth Veterinary Hospital’s Greg Ireland said people need to look after their furry and feathered friends in the heat.
Dr Ireland said all animal owners had to be aware of signs of heat stress in the coming days.
He offered some simple tips to keep your critters cool.
“Just make sure you provide shade, provide fresh drinking water,” Dr Ireland said.
“The car thing is obvious, but never at all leave them in there.”
The Tamworth vet also urged people to be mindful about the surfaces their pets were on, especially if they were tied to the backs of utes, walking on hot pavement or roads, or in caravans with festival campers.
He said similar warnings applied for larger animals like horses.
“It’s a similar message, just make sure there’s a provision of cool drinking water and a provision of shade,” he said.
“If they’re working horses, don’t work them too hard, they can stress a lot more quickly in the heat.”
Other authorities suggest a range of tips to keep pets cool in the heat, including adding ice blocks to water bowls and protecting animals with short, white fur with sunscreen.
Heat stroke in pets can potentially be fatal, but there are some obvious signs and symptoms, including rapid panting, lethargy, drooling, weakness, muscle tremors, or collapse.
Pets with these symptoms should be put in a cool shady area, wet-down with chilled water and fanned.