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Pet Care Specifics for the Winter Months

winter pet care | photo of small dog with coat onCharles D. Whitworth, DVM, and his staff at Whitworth Animal Clinic in Madison, Alabama, have an important reminder for their clients. According to some weather predictions, this winter could be especially cold. Be sure to prepare your pet for the lower temperatures. A little extra care will help keep your buddy protected from Jack Frost.

Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

No Couch Potatoes

Pets need to remain active throughout the year. Allowing them to just lounge around the house can lead to health problems such as joint pain and diabetes. During the wintertime, it’s a good idea to walk your dog while the sun’s still out. Not only will the sun help keep your pet warm, but it will also increase vitamin D levels. If it’s simply too cold outside, play a game of fetch indoors. Remember, every bit of exercise helps.

Keep an Eye Out for the Signs of Hypothermia

Hypothermia is a serious condition that could put your pet’s life at risk. Severe hypothermia can actually lead to heart failure. It’s essentially caused by overexposure to the cold. If your pet has started to shiver, this could be an early sign of hypothermia. The pet care experts at Whitworth Animal Clinic urge you to never leave your pet behind in a cold vehicle.

Care for Paws

The cold weather can definitely cause your pet’s paw pads to become cracked. Dog booties can provide an extra layer of protection. Winter salt can also irritate sensitive pads. After your pet has been walking on a salt-filled sidewalk, be sure to rinse its paws.

Keep Cats Safe

Winter pet care is just as important for cats. While keeping your cat inside on the coldest days is a good idea, you should also create a warm refuge outdoors. Furthermore, take extra precautions before cranking up your car. Because of the engine’s warmth, cats like to crawl under the hood. If you don’t see your cat, tap the hood to be on the safe side.

Warm Bedding

Allowing your pet to sleep on a cold floor is a bad idea. Elevated beds are far better. However, avoid placing the bedding near a space heater or fireplace. The hot surface can burn your pet.

Located in Madison, Alabama, Whitworth Animal Clinic proudly serves the surrounding areas in northern Alabama. Our veterinary facility specializes in pet care. From microchipping to surgery, we offer a wide range of important services. Don’t hesitate to contact Whitworth Animal Clinic for an appointment.

*This article is not meant to take the place of professional veterinarian advice. If you have questions, call the staff at Whitworth Animal Clinic or make an appointment with a vet in your area.

© 2018 Whitworth Animal Clinic. All rights reserved.

Diagnosing and Treating Hotspots

photo of a dog with a hotspot on their tailHotspots can cause pets a great deal of discomfort. If these inflamed skin lesions aren’t properly treated, they will only worsen over time, and the risk of a bacterial infection increases dramatically. Let’s take a closer look at how Charles D. Whitworth, DVM, in Madison, Alabama, diagnoses and treat hotspots.

Ugly and Uncomfortable

Hotspots are easy to see. They are often found on the head, chest area, and hips. In an effort to soothe the burning sensation, pets constantly lick and scratch the inflamed area. Because of the continuous scraping against the skin, pets tend to lose hair around the hotspots. It is not uncommon to see pus oozing from the skin. If you think your pet is suffering from this common problem, be sure to contact Whitworth Animal Clinic.

Discover & Treat the Cause

The root cause of hotspots varies from one pet to the next. Some of the most common causes include flea-allergy dermatitis, ear infections, environmental irritants, and parasites such as dust mites. During hot weather, long-haired dogs are more susceptible. This is why it’s so important to wash their coat on a regular basis. In order to stop hotspots from occurring, the underlying trigger must be discovered and treated.

Treatment for Hotspots

Dr. Whitworth will examine your pet and conduct the necessary testing to discover the irritant. After a diagnosis is made, Dr. Whitworth will develop an effective treatment plan which may include topical medication, pills, shots, or change of diet. The most important thing is to keep your dog or cat comfortable during the healing process. To make the hotspots easier to treat, the surrounding hair may need to be shaved. While an antiseptic solution is often used to cleanse the inflamed areas, antibiotics may be prescribed to medicate a secondary infection. Meanwhile, antihistamines can help reduce itchiness.

Preventing Hotpots

It’s definitely a good idea to regularly groom your pet. Bathing is especially important. Aside from keeping your pet smelling fresh, a good washing will help rinse away allergens and bacteria. Protecting your pet from fleas and ticks is just as important. Of course, every pet needs to be examined by an experienced veterinarian.

A Trusted Veterinary Practice

Located in Madison, Alabama, Whitworth Animal Clinic proudly serves all of the surrounding areas in north Alabama such as Huntsville, Decatur, Triana, and Athens. You can always trust us to make your pet’s health a top priority. From veterinary dermatology and dentistry to surgery, boarding, grooming and more, we provide a wide range of important pet services. Call for an appointment: 256.830.1503.

*This article is not meant to take the place of professional veterinarian advice. If you have any questions, call the staff at Whitworth Animal Clinic.

© 2018 Whitworth Animal Clinic. All rights reserved.

Help Your Dog Avoid Getting Diabetes

illustration of a cartoon bulldog holding a donutCanine diabetes is a serious disease that some dogs may acquire. Diabetes in dogs is the result of a dog lacking a hormone that is secreted by the pancreas called insulin. Another cause of diabetes is not having the ability to utilize secreted insulin in a normal way.

Your pet’s digestive system breaks down the food he eats into different types of matter. One of these digested components is glucose, which is carried into your dog’s cells via insulin. If you dog either can’t produce insulin or use it normally, hyperglycemia can occur. Hyperglycemia, having too much glucose (sugar) in the bloodstream, is often directly associated with diabetes. Canine diabetes, if not prevented or treated, can lead to kidney disease, severe infections or pancreatic disorders that can become lethal. It’s not known why, exactly, these issues with insulin secretion happen to some dogs. There is information, however, that can help you prevent your dog from acquiring diabetes.

Dogs Most Prone to Getting Diabetes

Because of fluctuations in their reproductive hormones, female dogs are twice as likely to get canine diabetes than their male counterparts. It’s also been found that diabetes in dogs is most often diagnosed when they are between seven to nine years old, are overweight and eat a diet high in fat. The genetic makeup of some dog breeds are more disposed to developing diabetes than others. They include the following:

  • Cairn Terriers
  • Poodles
  • Keeshonds
  • Bichon Frises
  • German Shepherds
  • Fox Terriers
  • Pugs
  • Samoyeds
  • Schnauzers
  • Australian Terriers

Tips To Keep Your Dog Safe From Diabetes

Be sure to schedule regular checkups with your north Alabama veterinarian so he or she can routinely test for Cushing’s disease and pancreatitis. Also, call your vet if you note differences in your dog’s appetite, thirst or urination behaviors.

If your dog is female, it’s a very good idea to have her spayed. When female dogs finish a heat cycle or give birth, their progesterone hormone levels rise and increase the risk of developing hyperglycemia.

Give your dog plenty of exercise. Activity helps to keep blood sugar levels normalized and keeps obesity at bay. At least one walk a day is important for your dog, and the longer the walk, the better, as long as it’s not excessively hot outside, you dog is in good health and is not too elderly for an extended stroll.

Feed your pet a healthy diet that is high in protein to keep blood sugar levels stable. Since there is a link between diabetes and obesity, be sure you’re not overfeeding your dog. A general rule of thumb is for your pet to eat 20-30 calories for each pound of their body weight per day. Be stingy with giving out dog treats and letting her eat too much food meant for humans. Instead, provide snacks like fresh fruit and vegetables that contain natural sugars, avoiding blood sugar spikes. If you feed your dog dry kibble, top it off with some gently boiled broccoli, kale or collards, which will increase the kibble’s fiber content.

If you live in Madison or the surrounding areas, the professionals at Whitworth Animal Clinic are ready to serve you and your pets.

Note that this article does not take the place of professional veterinary advice. If you need assistance for your pet or require a checkup, please contact our staff to set up an appointment at Whitworth Animal Clinic, located on Rainbow Drive in Madison. We are open every day except Sunday.

© 2018 Whitworth Animal Clinic. All rights reserved.

5 Ways to Help Your Overweight Canine

overweight dog | photo of an overweight beagleAlthough overweight canines may look cute with their plump bellies, the extra weight is certainly not healthy. Obese dogs are far more likely to suffer from ailments such as diabetes and high blood pressure. If your dog has packed on some extra pounds, it’s time to take action. Here are some tips to help your pal to slim down.

Reduce Total Calorie Intake

Many pet owners tend to make the mistake of overfeeding. In fact, more than half of today’s pets are considered to be overweight. According to Charles D. Whitworth, DVM, the unnecessary calories are bound to cause weight gain. This is especially true for the dogs that spend most of the day lounging around. If you’re having trouble figuring out the ideal diet, Whitworth Animal Clinic will be more than happy to help.

Switch to a Weight-Reducing Dog Food

Although dog food is readily available at any supermarket, quality will vary from one brand to the next. Always choose dog food that’s packed with nutritious ingredients. Be especially careful about choosing food that contains artificial additives and preservatives. It’s also a good idea to select meals high in protein. Research shows that protein does a better job of helping curb hunger.

Break a Sweat

Don’t allow your dog to become a couch potato. Like people, dogs need to exercise on a regular basis. Even a simple game of fetch can burn a lot of calories. Of course, a daily walk around the neighborhood can also make a big difference. If your dog has developed joint problems because of their additional weight, consider swim therapy. It’ll enhance fitness without putting excess pressure on their body.

Healthier Treats

Upon spotting a treat, most dogs jump for joy. While there’s nothing wrong with giving your canine a treat, be sure to make healthy choices. Commercial treats high in fat and sugar can cause a dog’s weight to balloon. Fruits and vegetables are far better alternatives. Some good options include apple crisps, banana chips, baby carrots, and green beans. However, keep in mind that not all fruits are appropriate for dogs. Grapes, raisins, and cherries can be especially toxic.

Keep Your Dog’s Mind Stimulated

When feeling bored, some dogs tend to overeat. This is why it’s so important to stimulate your dog’s mind. A puzzle feeder will certainly help keep your buddy entertained. In order to get to the treat, dogs must actually think.

If you need any help with reducing your dog’s weight, be sure to contact Whitworth Animal Clinic. Although our veterinary practice is located in Madison, we proudly serve all of the surrounding areas in north Alabama. From vaccinations to emergency veterinary care, we provide a long list of important pet services. Don’t hesitate to make an appointment with Charles D. Whitworth, DVM.

*This article is not meant to take the place of professional veterinarian advice. If you have questions, call the staff at Whitworth Animal Clinic or make an appointment with a vet in your area.

© 2018 Whitworth Animal Clinic. All rights reserved.

September is Happy, Healthy Cat Month

Healthy Cat Month | photo of woman with her cat

Healthy Cat Month

While cats are a bit more independent than dogs, they are still loyal and loving pets. Whether you’re relaxing on the couch watching TV or cooking outside on the grill, your cat will be around to provide great company. With September being Healthy Cat Month, now is the perfect time to give your feline friend some extra attention. Here are some tips for keeping your cat happy and healthy.

Give Your Cat a New Toy

Like people, cats hate being bored. To help keep your buddy entertained throughout the day, find them a new toy. If your cat tends to spend a lot of time inside, consider getting a cat tree. This toy gives cats the feeling of being in their natural environment. However, be especially careful about giving kittens toys such as furry mice. Some have plastic eyes and noses, which can be easily swallowed.

Clean Environment

Don’t overlook the value of providing a clean environment for your pet. Cats that live in a healthy home are far less likely to get sick. Take the time to rinse out your cat’s food and water bowls on a daily basis. This simple step will help deter the growth of bacteria and black mold. Charles D. Whitworth, DVM also stresses the importance of keeping your cat’s litter box clean.

Promote Exercise

Allowing your pet to just sit around is a recipe for disaster. It doesn’t take long for an inactive cat to pack on the extra pounds. Research shows that overweight cats are more likely to experience ailments such as high blood pressure and diabetes. Playing with your cat will certainly help burn some calories.

High-Quality Diet

Giving your pet high-quality foods will help it to thrive. Although some owners are tempted to give their cat a vegetarian diet, this is usually not a good idea. Certain vitamins and nutrients are only found in meats. Whitworth Animal Clinic will help you to find the healthiest meal plan for your cat.

Regular Veterinary Visits

Although your cat may not look forward to visiting the vet, it’s a critical aspect of good health. By examining your cat, Charles D. Whitworth, DVM will be able to rule out any underlying health issues. As you know, early detection of diseases can save a pet’s life.

With Healthy Cat Month just around the corner, now is the perfect time to schedule a visit with Whitworth Animal Clinic. While our veterinary practice is located in Madison, we proudly serve all the surrounding areas of northern Alabama. From vaccinations to emergency care, we provide a wide range of pet services.

Please note: this article is not meant to take the place of professional veterinarian advice. If you have questions, call the staff at Whitworth Animal Clinic or a vet in your area.

© 2018 Whitworth Animal Clinic. All rights reserved.

How to Give Your Dog a Pill

photo of black french bulldog looking at a spoonful of pills

When Dr. Charles D. Whitworth, DVM says, “Give your dog this pill twice a day,” don’t panic. It’s no secret that most pets hate taking pills. Many will even turn away in refusal. Using a few clever tactics will help you to overcome this problem.

Hot Dogs

Dogs typically go crazy over hot dogs. As a pet owner, you can use this fact to your advantage. After making an indent in a hot dog, simply plug it with the pill. Even large capsules can be hidden in big chunks. However, always make your pet’s health a top priority. Low-sodium hot dogs are definitely a better choice.

Chicken Hearts

Chicken hearts are perfect for the purpose of concealing pills. The heart’s natural opening makes the task especially easy. If you’re having trouble stuffing a pill down the aorta, slightly cut the tube to make it fit. Cooking the chicken heart for about 10 minutes will further enhance its tastiness. Your pet will greatly appreciate the extra effort.

Pasty Foods

Pasty foods help prevent dogs from uncovering a hidden medication. Liver paté is an especially great option. It’s a scrumptious treat that your dog will love. Most importantly, they won’t even notice the bad-tasting pill. Because liver paté is high in fat, you only need to give your pet a small piece.

Light Cream Cheese

While some dogs have no trouble consuming dairy, others experience difficulty digesting it. If your dog isn’t lactose intolerant, light cream cheese may prove to be a good option. Spreading it around the pill will help ward off a dog’s curiosity. The creamy nature of light cream cheese also makes it difficult for pets to separate the capsule.

Homemade Pill Pockets

Although pill pockets are readily available, you can opt to make your own at home. They take the difficulty out of medicating your dog. Flour, peanut butter, and coconut oil are the main ingredients needed. After stirring the mixture in a bowl, simply roll the balls on wax paper. Next, use the end of a pencil to put a small hole in each ball. You can freeze them to be used at a later date.

photo of a dog bowl full of food with pills on topIf you want to learn more about how to give your dog a pill, be sure to contact Whitworth Animal Clinic. Although our office is located in Madison, we proudly serve all the surrounding areas in north Alabama. From vaccinations to veterinary surgery, Whitworth Animal Clinic offers a wide range of different pet services. Call to schedule an appointment with Charles D. Whitworth, DVM.

*This article is not meant to take the place of professional veterinarian advice. If you have questions, call the staff at Whitworth Animal Clinic or make an appointment with a vet in your area.

© 2018 Whitworth Animal Clinic. All rights reserved.

Black Mold: Danger to Your Pet

photo of sad French Bulldog lying down with a thoughtful expression | black mold

Black Mold

There are plenty of hidden dangers that can jeopardize your pet’s health. Black mold can be especially harmful to cats and dogs. Because long-term mold exposure is potentially fatal, it’s important to take action as soon as possible. Use the following tips to help keep your friend safe.

What are the Signs of Mold Poisoning?

When suffering from mold poisoning, pets tend to become far less active. You may also notice alarming respiratory issues such as labored breathing and wheezing. Some of the other common symptoms include excessive scratching, bleeding from the nose or mouth, and vomiting.

Remove Your Pet from the Moldy Environment

If you think your pet’s sickness is a result of being exposed to black mold, take them out of the environment immediately. Of course, the first step is to call a veterinarian. In some instances, you may need to move your pet to a friend’s home until the problem has been resolved. Afterwards, be sure to decontaminate toys and bedding. The last thing you want is for your pet to get sick again.

Throw Away Spoiled Food

photo of mold growing rapidly on moldy bread in green and white spores

Make sure to throw out spoiled food and make sure your trash can has a lid on it.

Spoiled food is a big source of black mold. Charles D. Whitworth, DVM urges pet owners to properly dispose of leftovers. A loose garbage lid gives your pet easy access to spoiled items. It’s also important to keep an eye on expiration dates. Lastly, be sure to store pet food in a dry place. If the food smells strange, don’t hesitate to toss it out.

Clean Food and Water Bowls

Some people overlook the importance of cleaning their pet’s bowls. Failing to wash away the bacteria can lead to the growth of black mold. By washing the bowls daily, you’ll give your pet an extra measure of protection. Simply cleaning the dishes with mild detergent and hot water will do the trick. However, remember to rinse well.

Eliminate Excess Moisture

Black mold thrives in damp environments. A dehumidifier may prove to be a great investment. It’ll draw excess moisture from the air, which helps deter the growth of mold.

Mold Inspection

Every pet owner should consider getting regular mold inspections. The additional peace of mind is well worth it. By collecting air and surface samples, mold inspectors are able to precisely point out your home’s problem areas.

Located in Madison, Whitworth Animal Clinic proudly serves the entire north Alabama area. Whether your pet needs to be treated for mold exposure or is due for a vaccination, you can always count on Whitworth Animal Clinic. Call us to schedule an appointment with Charles D. Whitworth, DVM.

*This article is not meant to take the place of professional veterinarian advice. If you have any questions, call the staff at Whitworth Animal Clinic or make an appointment with a vet in your area.

© 2018 Whitworth Animal Clinic. All rights reserved.

Top 5 Ailments in Senior Cats (Age 7-10)

photo of attractive senior woman interacting with her cat |Caring for your senior cat should always remain a top priority. As your pet ages, you’ll need to take a few extra precautions to safeguard it against certain illnesses. Let’s take a look at the top five ailments found in senior cats.

Kidney Disease

A feline’s kidneys aren’t much different from your own. They‘re designed to filter out waste products from the body. If your cat’s kidneys aren’t properly functioning, it’s only a matter of time before trouble arises. Toxins will gradually start to build up within the bloodstream. Some of the common symptoms of kidney disease include weight loss, vomiting, increased thirst, and a poor appetite.

Heart Disease

Heart disease is an ailment that needs to be treated as soon as possible. Failing to take action puts your cat at risk of experiencing cardiac failure. The best approach is to allow Whitworth Animal Clinic to perform an annual physical exam. Diagnostic tests enable Dr. Whitworth to fully evaluate the condition of your pet’s heart. Difficulty breathing, extreme fatigue and a weak pulse are some of the most common signs of heart disease.


Some older cats are more at risk of developing diabetes than others. Overweight cats that don’t get enough exercise are definitely more susceptible. Diet also plays a major role in the occurrence of this disorder. Luckily, diabetes can be effectively managed with regular insulin injections. When properly treated, diabetic cats are able to enjoy a high-quality life. In some instances, insulation treatments may no longer be needed.


Arthritis subjects pets to a great deal of pain and stiffness. If your senior cat has suddenly become less active and starts to sleep more than usual, there’s a good chance that arthritis is to blame. Quickly taking action will help prevent the use of powerful medications. Because prescription painkillers can cause serious side effects, they should be the last result. Glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate are two of the most popular over-the-counter dietary supplements.

Dental Disease

Some cat owners tend to overlook the importance of dental health. When excess plaque and tarter is allowed to develop on a cat’s teeth, the amount of bacteria inside its mouth will increase dramatically. This could lead to a number of other issues, including a dangerous infection. A dental cleaning is a highly recommended preventive measure.

If you have any questions about caring for your pet, be sure to contact Whitworth Animal Clinic. While our facility is located in Madison, we proudly serve all of the surrounding areas in northern Alabama. From flea control to emergency veterinary surgery, Whitworth Animal Clinic offers a wide range of different services.

*This article is not meant to take the place of professional veterinarian advice. If you have questions, call the staff at Whitworth Animal Clinic or make an appointment with a vet in your area.

© 2018 Whitworth Animal Clinic. All rights reserved.

Safe Vacation Travel Tips For Your Pet

photo of white German Shepard in a crate in the back of an SUV

Helpful Travel Tips

When you have an outing this season, you may want to take your pet along with you. After all, this member of your family needs fun and relaxation, too.

There are some things to keep in mind when traveling with a pet, depending upon the type of destination you’re headed to and how you’re getting there. According to The Humane Society, some pets aren’t suited for travel. Check with Whitworth Animal Clinic or a veterinarian in your area before committing to taking your pet along with you on a trip, whether you’re going to the beach, a lake, or headed for some relaxation in the woods.

Transportation With Pets

If you’re taking your pet with you on a long car ride to your destination, be prepared so she is safe and happy. Take the following precautions before setting off on that car journey:

  • Dogs should travel in a crate that is anchored to the car’s seatbelt. Dog restraints and seatbelts are helpful in stopping your pet from roaming throughout the vehicle, but not safe should a crash occur.
  • Place your cat in a carrier that is restrained by securing a seatbelt around the carrier’s front.
  • Make lots of stops for exercise and elimination.
  • Don’t leave your pet alone in the car, even for a few minutes. A car’s interior can get hot very quickly, causing extreme health issues.

If your trip involves a boat ride with your pet, be sure there is enough fresh drinking water on board. Make sure there is a shaded area for your pet to relax, and that your dog’s feet are protected from hot surfaces. It’s a good idea to equip your dog with a life jacket on a boat, whether or not he is a good swimmer. Even great swimmers can quickly get exhausted in the water.

Preparing For Your Destination

You can have a great time at the beach with your pets. Be prepared, though, and mind these safety hints before you take off for sun and fun. Bring the following items along with you:

  • A beach umbrella so your dog has shade from the sun
  • Lots of fresh, cool water and a bowl (not placed in the direct sun!)
  • A towel or blanket to protect your dog’s paws from the hot sand
  • Watch for signs that your pet is becoming overheated
  • If your dog has a light-colored coat or very short haircut, consider applying sunscreen made specifically for dogs

Time at the lake with your pet can be loads of fun, but take these precautions before taking your dog swimming at a lake:

  • photo of a Staffordshire bull terrier diving into water wearing a life jacketDon’t let your dog swim in stagnant water that can have dangerous amoeba floating in it
  • Blue-green algae in lakes can be toxic if your dog eats it
  • Outfit your pet with a life jacket if your dog is not a strong swimmer
  • Have clean, fresh water on hand and a dog bowl
  • Have a first aid kit
  • Dry your dog’s ears after a swim
  • Check your pet’s body all over for ticks, cuts, and other potential health issues

If going into the woods for camping or hiking with your pet, be sure you pack the right supplies (rubbing alcohol, tweezers for picking out thorns, bandages, etc.). Have plenty of clean water available and a life jacket for your dog in case there is a lake or pond nearby for swimming. Check your pet for ticks often. Always keep your dog on a leash when walking on woodland trails to protect against him eating toxic plants and other unknown elements. Let your pet sleep in the same tent as you do for protection and warmth.

The tips for pet travel are basically the same for cats who are leash-trained and allowed in the areas you are traveling to.

For more information on pet travel, it’s a great idea to consult your vet. If you live in Madison or the surrounding areas in north Alabama, the professionals at Whitworth Animal Clinic are available to answer your questions.

This blog does not take the place of professional veterinarian advice. Make an appointment with Whitworth Animal Clinic for more information.

© 2018 Whitworth Animal Clinic. All rights reserved.

Hot Weather Strolls

photo of owner and labrador retriever dog walking in the city

What To Do, What Not To Do in Hot Weather

Summer is a great time to get outdoors and enjoy the sunshine and hot weather with your pet. Daily exercise is beneficial for your dog, but there are some safety issues to be aware of when taking that summer stroll on especially hot days.

Decrease The Duration of Your Walks in Hot Weather

Instead of taking your usual 30-minute walk in 90-plus-degree heat, shorten your exercise time in half. Your dog’s paw pads can become burned if you walk along the street or on an asphalt path. Certain pavement materials can become extremely hot, burning the bottoms of your pet’s paws and causing pain for days afterwards. You can check the temperature of the ground surface by placing your hand or bare foot on the ground and leaving it there for five seconds. If you can’t tolerate that heat for that long, neither can your dog. Some options to walking on ground that is too hot are to take your stroll either early in the morning before the sun’s heat reaches its peak or in the evening after sundown. Most important is to keep your walks shorter than usual if you must walk your pet on a blistering hot day, especially on asphalt or cement surfaces. Your pet can also wear doggie boots to protect his feet. Booties are great in the winter cold, but can also isolate heat.

Hydration Is Key

photo of a happy dog drinking water from bottle in hot weather | hydrationDogs cannot sweat in order to naturally cool themselves off. Instead, they pant. Even if you’ve shortened the duration of your walk, check on your dog’s status when it’s very hot outside. You’ll see that your dog has become overheated and possibly dehydrated if she is drooling a lot. She’ll also move more slowly, have reddened eyes, and may even look a bit pale. Hot weather requires additional hydration for your pet.

If your dog has a dark coat, he will absorb more heat than lighter-coated dogs. A pet that is overweight is also more at risk for dehydration. Always carry a bottle of cool bottle of water with you on a summer’s day stroll so you can ensure adequate hydration for your pet.

If you must drive to a location where you enjoy walks with your pooch, be sure never to leave her in a parked car, even for a few minutes or even if the car is in the shade. Not only can she become overexcited looking at people walking by, but she can also become panicked, which will put her at risk for dehydration.

Heatstroke and dehydration can become serious issues, especially if not treated right away. If you believe your dog has heatstroke and/or is dehydrated, contact Whitworth Animal Clinic in north Alabama or your local veterinarian for advice and possible treatment.

If you live in Madison or surrounding areas in north Alabama, the professionals at Whitworth Animal Clinic are available to help with all of your pet’s needs. Our full-service clinic is available to the communities of Madison, Huntsville, Decatur, and surrounding areas in north Alabama, offering preventive health care, check-ups, and consultations.

This blog is for informational purposes only and does not take the place of professional veterinarian advice.

© 2018 Whitworth Animal Clinic. All rights reserved.