As the heatwave hits Huddersfield next week, animal lovers have been urged to take car of their pets in the sun.
Vets have offered advice on how to care for your animals in hot weather.
Dr Huw Stacey, director of clinical services at Vets4Pets, said: “The impending heatwave in the UK means pets will be at high risk of suffering from heatstroke, so owners need to take the necessary precautions to help keep their pets as cool as possible.”
Top tips include making sure your pet isn’t trapped inside a parked car, conservatory or caravan as they all act as sun traps where temperatures can soar to 50 degrees in minutes.
Dr Stacey said: “Being subjected to these kinds of temperatures can not only lead to heatstroke, but can also cause fatal brain or organ damage. A mortality rate of 50% has been reported if temperatures reach 65 degrees, which can easily happen in a car or conservatory on a hot day.”
High temperatures can also make asphalt on roads and pavements dangerous for pets, as it can reach an unbearable 60 degrees in 30-degree weather.
Dr Stacey said: “Smaller pets, including rabbits, guinea pigs and hamsters, can also suffer from heatstroke if they are exposed to direct sunlight for extended periods of time.
“To help keep them cool, it is always best to move their cages or hutches into shaded areas of the garden or into a cool area of the house, garage or shed.”
Dehydration can also cause serious problems.
Signs include sunken eyes, little or no urination and dry, sticky gums. It can lead to collapse and kidney failure - so pets should always have fresh water.
Signs of heatstroke include heavy panting, excessive drooling, reddened gums, lethargy, drowsiness, lack of coordination, vomiting and collapse. call a vet immediately if you spot these symptoms.
Dr Stacey added: “Whilst the hotter weather may be a welcome change for many owners, they need to remember that this can be an unpleasant change for their pets. But if they follow these tips, their pets can enjoy the warmer weather too.”