Heat Stroke and Hyperthermia in Dogs
Increased Body Temperature and Heat Stroke in Dogs
Hyperthermia is an elevation in body temperature that is above the generally accepted normal range. Although normal values for dogs vary slightly, it usually is accepted that body temperatures above 103° F (39° C) are abnormal.
Heat stroke, meanwhile, is a form of non-fever hyperthermia that occurs when heat-dissipating mechanisms of the body cannot accommodate excessive external heat. Typically associated with temperature of of 106° F (41° C) or higher without signs of inflammation, a heat stroke can lead to multiple organ dysfunction.
This condition can lead to multiple organ dysfunction. Temperatures are suggestive of non-fever hyperthermia. Another type, malignant hyperthermia, is an uncommon familial non-fever hyperthermia that can occur secondary to some anesthetic agents.
Hyperthermia can be categorized as either fever or non-fever hyperthermias. Fever hyperthermia results from inflammation in the body (such as the type that occurs secondary to a bacterial infection). Non-fever hyperthermia results from all other causes of increased body temperature.
Other causes of non-fever hyperthermia include excessive exercise, excessive levels of thyroid hormones in the body, and lesions in the hypothalamus, the part of the brain that regulates body temperature.
Non-fever hyperthermia occurs most commonly in dogs (as opposed to cats). It can affect any breed, but is more frequent in long-haired dogs and short-nosed, flat-faced dogs, also known as brachycephalic breeds. It can occur at any age but tends to affect young dogs more than old dogs.
Symptoms and Types
Hyperthermia can be categorized as either fever or non-fever hyperthermias; heat stroke is a common form of the latter. Symptoms of both types include:
The act of urinating on objects or areas as a method of marking territory
A cavity in the mouth where the respiratory systems and gastrointestinal systems come together
The voice box; this is one part of the respiratory system
Something that is related to the whole body and not just one particular part or organ
Something that becomes worse or life threatening as it spreads
The term for a quick heartbeat
An in-depth examination of the properties of urine; used to determine the presence or absence of illness
upper respiratory tract
The section of the respiratory system that contains the mouth, nose, pharynx, larynx, trachea, and epiglottis.
The windpipe; it carries air from the bronchi to the mouth
Part of the thalamus that helps to regulate the release of certain hormones
High body temperature
A medical condition in which an animal is unable to control the movements of their muscles; may result in collapse or stumbling.
Any substance known to eliminate feeling; usually applied during a painful medical procedure.
Term used to imply that a situation or condition is more severe than usual; also used to refer to a disease having run a short course or come on suddenly.
An animal with a wide head, short in stature.
A record of the activity of the myocardium
The act of throwing up blood
The area between the abdomen and thighs; the inguinal area
The term used to describe the movement of an animal
The act of helping an animal to adjust to something or some place foreign to them.
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