Signs and symptoms of dog's hypothermia
If you are planning to go out hunting with your hounds during the next winter season and you are not aware of dogs hypothermia signs and symptoms, this post is for you!
Probably you have heard about the myth of dogs endurance and resistance to hypothermia, and even when it may be partially true since dogs, particularly some breeds like Huskies and Alaskan Malamute, are quite good adapted to face low temperatures, same as humans they may suffer from hypothermia, particularly under extremely low temperature conditions, white environment or windy days.
On the other hand, long time exposure to cold weather may lead to hypothermia no matter how well adapted dogs are, so identifying signs and symptoms of hypothermia remains paramount for hunters in order to keep their dogs safe.
Here it's necessary to make a pause because if you identify hypothermia on one or more of your hounds, probably is because you failed to prevent it! So keep in mind that the best hypothermia treatment is prevention! ... if you do your job well preventing it, probably it will be never necessary to identify its symptoms.
But just in case, be sure to be aware about what to look for when you suspect hypothermia on your hounds and be prepared to deal with it immediately in order to prevent death.
First of all, same as humans dogs will begin to shiver and tremble. This way the body tries to keep body temperature but sooner or later the mechanism fail and temperature drops, so if your hound is trembling it's time to stop hunting and take care of it.
Another clear sign of hypothermia are behavior changes. When a dog suffer of hypothermia looks weak and lethargic, probably it will be sleepy and will move slower than usual.
If you see such symptoms stop immediately what you are doing and take care of your hound before it's too late!
If you are not sure about hypothermia based on shivering and behaviour, make a quick physical examination.
If fur a skin are cold when you touch your hound, pupils are dilated and gums look pale, there's no doubt, your dog is suffering from hypothermia and needs urgent attention, otherwise consequences may be fatal.
If you have a thermometer use it, body temperature is below 95 Fahrenheit degrees (35 celsius) the diagnosis is confirmed and definitely you need to warm your hound and find a veterinary.
If not, trouble to walk and breathe will show up, heart rate will decrease and your dog probably will die, so don't underestimate low temperature environments because they can kill both, humans and hounds.
Being aware and identify hypothermia symptoms is vital to keep you and your hunting pack safe during winter hunting season, don't forget it!