Papillons and other small dogs have low body mass that make them lose heat easier.
Big dogs have the bigger chance to get a heatstroke, than a small dog, but if any dog's temperature reaches about 101 degrees, he will no longer be able to maintain his normal body temperature. At 106 degrees, you got only minutes to safe his life, because his internal organs are in the breakdown process.If he is not cooled down quickly, he will die. Even at that stage, if you did bring his temperature down, he may already have suffered irreversible internal damage.
To regulate his temperate, the only tool your friend has is : panting. He will have an enlarged tongue while panting, when hot.. This helps to increase the surface area through which heat can be dissipated.
Symptoms of a Heatstroke
- Pale gums, bright red tongue;
- Disorientation and your dog doesn't respond to his name;
- Increased heart rate;
- Thick saliva;
- Breathing difficulties;
- Young puppies and older dogs;
- Overweight dogs;
- Dogs with an existing illness or recovering from illness or surgery;
Some techniques to cool your dog includes spraying him down with cool water, or immersing his entire body in cool – not cold – water; wrapping the dog in cool, wet towels; cooling with fans; Stop these procedures when temperature reaches 103° F (using a rectal thermometer) to avoid dropping below normal body temperature.
Do not give your dog ice or very cold water, as this may cause blood vessels near the surface of the body to constrict and may decrease heat dissipation. A shivering response also is undesirable, as it creates internal heat. Lowering the temperature too quickly can lead to other health problems, a gradual lowering is best. The same guideline applies to drinking water. Allow your dog to drink cool, not cold, water freely. However, do not force your dog to drink.
The very best is always to prevent a heatstroke.
Preventing a Heatstroke
Papillons especially do not always know when to stop.
- Try and keep your dog's activity to a minimum particularly on hot and humid days;
- Exercise early morning best, or late at night on hot days.