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Your English Bulldog May Be
At Risk for Heat Stroke
and you may not even know it

Read this account from an experienced breeder and handler. Learn how easy it is for your dog to be overcome by this deadly condition.

"We had a close call today with my boy Obie and I would just like to take this opportunity to remind everyone that heat exhaustion can happen at any time of the year .

It's only 60 degrees out side,my girls decided to take Obie outside to play basketball with out my knowing. That is until they brought him in ,they knew he needed to cool down but not soon enough. All I could hear was a a dog in distress and ran to find him. I grabbed the ice bin from the freezer ran to the bathroom and started the tub. By the time I got him in the tub his tongue and gums were blue, he was burning up!

As the tub was filling with cool water I rubbed ice on his belly ,ears, tongue, I wet the shammy that was already hanging in the bath room, wrapped it around his belly. While Jeff continued with the cooling I ran for the unopened lemon juice, this is the first time in 11 years I've ever had to use it. I gave him 3 squirts several minutes apart to the inside of his mouth/cheek, I didn't have the liquid benadryl nor did I have time to check his temp prior to putting him in the tub.

After his color came back and he was breathing normal I checked his temp,it was 101.8. He's fine now but I can't stress enough how important it is that we all know the signs of heat exhaustion and what to do about it. Time is of the essences and you must act quickly ! Make sure you always have lemon juice on hand , you may never need it but you never know when you will either.

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Below are the signs of heat exhaustion please take a few minutes to read them over, it may save your Bullies life.

Take the pet's temperature rectally if possible. A normal temperature is between 101-102 degree. A body temperature of about 104 degrees or higher is probable evidence for heat stroke. Place your pet in a tub of cool running water or spray with a hose being sure the cool water contacts the skin and doesn't simply run off the coat. Thoroughly wet the belly and inside the legs. In extreme cases use a ice pack under the neck andfront leg pits. Take a rectal temperature if possible to know when to stop cooling. A safe temperature is below 103 degrees to stop the cooling process.

The first signs of heat exhaustion:

a) Excessive panting

b) The skin on the inside of the ears becomes flushed and red.

Heat Exhaustion can progress in to Heat Stroke, as indicated by:

a) Weakness

b) Staggering

c) Fainting - loss of consciousness Heat stroke is an emergency situation. If your dog shows signs of heat stroke, you must cool him down as rapidly as possible. Don't wait for veterinary treatment. Heat Stroke is an Emergency - Treat the dog NOW! DO NOT try to force your dog to drink. His swelling airways can cause any liquid he takes in to be regurgitated and possibly aspirated into his lungs. However if a dogs temperature is 105 or higher rub a piece of ice on his tongue, 10 seconds on, 10 seconds off. Hose the dog down with cool water - not cold. Apply an ice pack to the dog, and soaked towels or any other form of fabric to their body.

If at all possible, get him into a tub of cool water -- again, cool - not cold! However, in an extreme emergency if cold is all there is, use it. If none of this is working, a cool water enema can help to cool the dog internally. Be careful not to induce to rapidly, or with water cooler than a few degrees below body temp, or you can put your dog into serious shock. As your dog is panting, his airways are swelling, causing him to pant harder yet again. You need to break this cycle. Children's allergy treatment Benadryl can be administered by mouth from dropper. Consult your vet in advance, or by phone is necessary, for exact dosage. Better still is to obtain a supply of injectible Benadryl to keep on hand. Do not stop treatment until your dog's body temperature is below 103. As soon as the dog's internal temperature has stabilized at a near normal level transport the dog to your vet. Heat stroke can leave permanent damage.

reprinted with permission
Margie Foley - Bulldogs World

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