Preventing water intoxication, heat exhaustion in dogs

Jul 4, 2018

Water intoxication is not common, but it’s a condition that can affect pets if they drink too much water.

Water intoxication is not common, but it’s a condition that can affect pets if they drink too much water. “It definitely throws off the electrolyte balance as well as causes the pet’s blood pressure to tank,” said Dr. Danielle Bell of the Animal Emergency Clinic of North Alabama. Bell says water intoxication can happen to a dog while playing in the lake, in a pool, or drinking from a hose. It can even happen while the dog is in the water and doesn’t appear to be drinking any. Symptoms for water intoxication include lethargy and nausea. Symptoms for heat exhaustion in dogs can be similar. “Is the pet having difficulty breathing, or is the pet taking in too much water and lethargic and have nausea at that point – so very difficult to identify.”  When pets are in the water, she says to be aware and keep an eye on timing. “I would say in an hour’s timing, an excessive amount could be harmful to a small dog”, said Bell. Breaks from outside activity can help, and she says remembers to make sure they have something to drink.

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