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'Absolutely devastating' - Norwich vet warns against leaving dogs in hot cars

PUBLISHED: 09:50 23 July 2019 | UPDATED: 15:57 23 July 2019

Animal care experts have given pet owners and others advice on how to care for four-legged friends in hot weather. 
Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Animal care experts have given pet owners and others advice on how to care for four-legged friends in hot weather. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2013

A Norwich vet has called on the community to look after our four-legged friends as a record-breaking heatwave approaches.

With temperatures expected to reach highs of 33 degrees this week, animal experts have warned owners of the danger of extreme heat on pets and urged people to read advice on how to keep them cool.

Leanne Symonds, a veterinary nurse at Willow Veterinary Clinic in Thorpe Road, Norwich, said: "It's always the summer and when there are heatwaves; we expect it to get busier.

"Heat stroke can happen quite quickly, symptoms can be hyperventilating, panting, and then they can go weak and collapse. When that happens take them straight to a vet."

Veterinary clinics and the RSPCA, advise that pets should be kept with a constant supply of cool water, to walk dogs at dawn or dusk for short periods while the temperature is cooler and to avoid locking animals in cars.

READ MORE: Is it illegal to leave a dog in a hot car?

Ms Symonds said: "I would even say to people who don't even have any pets is to put some water on your doorsteps to help dogs and cats in your local area.

"A massive issue is dogs in hot cars, so please avoid leaving them in a car at all costs. Some retailers have even started to walk around their car parks checking cars, and I would advise other businesses to do the same in this heat."

Heat stoke can be fatal for dogs who are unable to regulate their body temperatures. After only eight minutes in a hot car their organs can start to fail.

"It is horrible for animal lovers to witness and it can be absolutely devastating for us because we are the ones that have to see these animals deteriorate and in agony because it is something that can be easily prevented," Ms Symonds said.

"Everyone needs to be vigilant, be aware and look after your pets and others' pets this summer."

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Here are some tips on how to help your pets in this heatwave:

- Put down damp towels for your pet to lie on;

- Put paddling pools in your garden;

- Put ice cubes in their water bowls;

- Use pet sun cream on their exposed skin;

- And freeze dog treats into ice cubes.

Have you got any tips for keeping pets cool? Let us know in the comments.

How small businesses cope with hot weather;

The rising temperatures can lead to mixed fortunes for some of our small businesses.

Ted Pinnock, worker at Ye Olde Vape Shope, based in Castle Mall, said that "trade is damaged with hot weather as people would rather be outside basking in the heat and trade escalates when its raining".

However, Troy Eddie from Lakenham Creamery's stall on Norwich Market said trade excels in hot weather.

Despite certain businesses taking a hit, individuals are still revelling in the heat and making the most of it whilst it's here. Robbie Belham, 20, said: "I like the heat, it allows people to get out and about, later this week, probably Wednesday, I am going to the beach. So long as you are careful, wearing hats, applying sun-cream and taking a bottle of water or drink with you, the hot weather is brilliant."

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