In many ways animals are like humans. Such as, we all enjoy going camping, but more importantly, the fact that we all need to stay hydrated is the biggest way that we are the same. When humans do not hydrate properly they become susceptible to dehydration and heat stroke. Animals also suffer from these symptoms if not properly maintained body temperatures and water levels. Dehydration and heat stroke can be hard to distinguish between, but there are ways to tell them apart. When camping with your pets it is important to make sure you know how to tell if your animals are having trouble.
The main indicators that your dog, for instance, is suffering from a lack of water or heat are heavy panting and lethargic behavior. When they only want to lay down with their tongue hanging out is when you should be considering finding a veterinarian ready to help. The main differences between heat stroke and dehydration is that heat stroke causes discoloration of the dog’s gums and tongue. Whereas, dehydration only causes severe dryness of the gums and tongue. In either case, veterinary assistance will be required for treatment of the animal.
Treatments also differ between the two cases. Heat stroke, being the more serious of the two, requires the longer treatment time. When being corrected, the veterinarians will cool the dog’s body temperature down to normal levels with cold water baths and fans. As well as an intravenous drip if needed to restore fluids. Recovery time can take anywhere from a few days to two or three weeks. Now if noticed early enough, dehydration can be dealt with by your own standards, but just giving your pet water is not enough. If the point is crossed when your animal can not be helped with water alone a vet will be needed. This is relatively not life-threatening for your animal, but not to be taken lightly because it can be lethal. If you are not sure if your pet is going to be ok, then it is best to call a vet in for help to be safe because they are your best friend.