With summer now in full swing, pet owners need to be more aware of the heat-related dangers that can impact dogs, cats, and other pets. Did you know that some dog breeds are at higher risk for heatstroke than others?
A recent article in Nature’s Scientific Reports studied the incidence and risk factors for heat-related illness in UK dogs. A review of the veterinary records of over 900,000 dogs found nearly 400 heat-related illness events and a 14% event fatality rate.
Several risk factors were identified, including:
- Higher than normal body weight
- Age of 2 years and over
- Brachycephalic (flattened) skull shape
- A weight of over 50 kg (110 lbs.)
What are some of the breeds at higher risk for heatstroke? Not surprisingly, larger dogs with a brachycephalic skull shape were at highest risk. They include:
- Chow Chow
- French Bulldog
- Dogue de Bordeaux
- Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
The popularity of brachycephalic breeds combined with the growing problem of pet obesity can put your dog at increased risk for heatstroke. Remember to never leave your dog in a hot car. Here are some other helpful heatstroke prevention tips for dog owners.