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French Bulldog Heatstroke
Frenchies aren’t the best at regulating their body temperatures…
This is due to their cute squishy little faces that can give them a hard time breathing.
Unfortunately, this makes heatstroke much more common in Frenchies than other breeds.
You’ll need to have care during hot seasons to keep your Frenchie safe. If you live in a hot area, you’ll need to exercise caution year-round.
If left untreated, heat stress can eventually lead to heat stroke, also known as hyperthermia.
What Exactly Is Heatstroke?
Heatstroke is another word for hyperthermia, which is defined as a body temperature greater than or equal to 104F.
Heat Exhaustion vs. Heatstroke
Heat exhaustion is the condition that occurs before heatstroke. Untreated heat exhaustion can lead to heatstroke.
Causes of Heatstroke in French Bulldogs
- Leaving your dog in the car on a hot day
- No shade or water when outside
- Ignoring signs of heat stress
- High temperature & humidity
- Lack of airflow in the environment
- Sudden exposure to hot weather– dogs take time to acclimate to changes in temperature
Symptoms of heat stress in French Bulldogs
- Blue or bright red gums
- Excessive panting
- Signs of discomfort
Signs of heatstroke in French Bulldogs
If your dog is exhibiting any signs of heatstroke, get immediate veterinary attention.
- Excessive panting that gets worse
- Excessive drooling
- Glazed eyes
- Lack of coordination & lethargy
- Loss of consciousness
- Rapid heart rate
- Bright red or pale gums
- Mental confusion
How to Prevent Heatstroke in your Frenchie
As mentioned earlier, being a Frenchie owner means that you’ll always need to keep your Frenchie’s body temperature on mind, especially on those hot summer days.
Just because the other dogs are fine, doesn’t mean your Frenchie is.
- Limit exposure to hot & humid conditions
- Never leave your dog in a car with no A/C & the windows up
- When outside, ensure access to water & shady spots
What should I do if my dog is overheated?
According to PetMD, these are some of the steps you should follow to treat an overheated dog.
- Move to a cooler area; get indoors if you’re outside.
- Put your dog in the bathtub or puppy-pool.
- Run a cool (not cold) shower over your pet, covering the whole body — especially the back of the head and neck. Keep their head elevated to prevent aspiration pneumonia.
- If you don’t have a tub/shower available, use a garden hose or small pool with cool water.
- Apply a cold pack to the dog’s head. A packet of frozen vegetables or anything else from the freezer should work.
- Massage their legs. A vigorous rubbing helps the dog’s circulation and reduces the risks of shock.
- Let the dog drink as much cool or cold water as it wants. Adding a pinch of salt to the water bowl will help the dog replace the minerals it lost through panting.
What can happen if heatstroke is left Untreated
It’s extremely important that you don’t take heatstroke lightly.
If you suspect your Frenchie might have heatstroke, get them to the vet ASAP.
Don’t wait to see if they improve at home– in some cases, heatstroke can lead to death in as little as 15 minutes
- Permanent damage to organs
The earlier you get your Frenchie to the vet, the better their prognosis is.