Keep 'em cool this summer

Beat the heat

Keep 'em cool this summer

While summer in Bangalore is not as intense as Delhi, pet owners need to take precautions to see that their pet does not get dehydrated. Shachi Raju, owner of a Persian cat Chubby, ensures that her pet doesn’t feel the heat. She says that her cat usually rushes to rooms where the air condition is on during summers.

Even if it is not, Shachi feels that Chubby gives her hints to put the AC on. "She eats less and prefers sleeping more now. Sometimes we switch on the AC just for her," she reveals. What about power cuts? Shachi states that there is a cool spot in their backyard, her cat usually retreats to when the power goes.  Chubby is so used to AC that when Shachi's husband takes her out in the car, she refuses to step out and has to be pulled out.

For Ramesh Nair, a veteran dog breeder who owns a 3 year old St Bernard and a 18 month old Siberian husky, keeping his dogs in a room with air cooler is top priority. He also makes sure to shed their hair off during summer. Apart from this, he feeds them 'cool food' like watermelon, palak, etc to keep their bodies calm. "In summer, the dogs are usually aggressive. So it is necessary to cool their system. These dogs are bred in cool climate. When they come to a tropical climate like ours, one needs to focus a bit too much on them," he states.

However, there are also cases where the pet owners have had to nurse their pets back to health after getting sick because of the heat. For instance, the summer heat nearly claimed Pooja Kumar's 14 month old bull dog Buddy. Pooja had placed her pet at a boarding centre for animals in the City for six days, as she had to travel abroad. To her horror when she went to pick him up, she found him suffered from tick fever and skin infection due to prolonged exposure to sun. Her dog was hospitalised for 12 days.

Dr Pawan Kumar of Cessna Lifeline Veterinary Hospital points that high temperature, increased heart beat rate, dullness and bleeding of nose are symptoms that indicates the dog is stressed by the heat. Breeds like St Bernard, Siberian husky, Pug and Bulldog are  susceptible to heat stroke.  

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