Cat Heat Stroke Symptoms
Most people tend to associate heat stroke in pets with dogs, but felines can be afflicted as well. Like dogs, cats can only cool down by panting or sweating from the pads on their feet. That’s why you need to be as vigilant with Kitty during Austin’s upcoming summer weather, as feline heat stroke can prove extremely dangerous to your feline.
While any cat is at risk for heat stroke, a few breeds are more susceptible to it than others. They include:
- elderly or ill cats or kittens
- overweight cats
- cats with airway disease
- breeds with shortened faces, like Persians
A cat’s regular body temperature is 101.3 degrees Fahrenheit: a rectal temperature of 103 degrees indicates the likelihood of heat stroke.
Some of the signs of feline heat stroke are:
- noisy, frantic panting
- salivation and/or the presence of thick, sticky saliva
- vomiting (especially with blood)
- diarrhea (especially with blood)
- restlessness and/or lethargy
- excessive sweating
- redness in the tongue and around the mouth
- pale gums
- compulsive grooming (the dampness from licking cools as it evaporates)
- stumbling and/or falling down
If you suspect that Kitty is suffering from heat stroke, gently dip your cat in lukewarm water to cool him or her down. A bathtub is a good place to do this: make sure you keep Kitty’s head above water. Alternately, you can put your feline pal in the kitchen sink and use the spray nozzle to drizzle water over him or her or wrap Kitty in some cold washcloths.
Put Kitty in front of a fan or into an air-conditioned room to dry. Also try giving him or her some cold water with some salt in it. This will aid in the re-hydration process. If Kitty refuses to drink, try using a syringe or spoon to put a bit of the water/salt mixture in the side of his or her mouth.
Once you’ve cooled down your feline, be sure to also take Kitty to Austin Pet and Bird. Our caring vets will monitor your cat to make sure there’s no organ damage or other possible long-term complications from heat stroke. When you have a cat health crisis on your hands, contact the vets more Austinites trust!
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