Dehydration in Dogs

Dog drinking
Dehydration is a lack of water in the body, and can cause serious complications for pets and people alike. Water is essential to all living beings, including dogs, who depend on proper daily fluid intake to maintain appropriate health. It makes up 80 percent of your dog’s body, and dissolves natural and unnatural substances as well as serves as the root of all his biological processes, including circulation, digestion and waste removal.

What Causes Dehydration in Dogs?

Dehydration occurs when fluid levels drop to less than normal. This is due to either reduced water intake or increased fluid loss. Fluid loss can be due to overheating in hot weather or a bout of vomiting or diarrhea, especially in puppies.

What Are the General Symptoms of Dehydration in Dogs?

  • Sunken eyes
  • Lethargy
  • Loss of appetite
  • Dry mouth
  • Depression

What Should I Do If I Think My Dog Is Dehydrated?

Dehydration may indicate a serious underlying problem. If you suspect that your dog is dehydrated, take him to a Lange Animal Clinic veterinarian immediately. You may be able to detect dehydration at home by gently lifting the skin on the back of your dog’s neck or between the shoulder blades—unless your dog is seriously overweight or very shin, it should immediately return to a normal position. If he is lacking in fluids, the lifted skin may not quickly return to normal. Often, however, the signs of dehydration are not obvious, and only a veterinarian can provide proper diagnosis and treatment.

Are Certain Dogs Prone to Dehydration?

Dogs most at risk for dehydration are those who suffer from various illnesses such as kidney disorders, cancer and infectious disease. Elderly dogs and pregnant or nursing dogs may be prone to dehydration, as well as diabetic dogs whose condition is not regularly monitored.

How Is Dehydration Treated?

One of our veterinarians will administer intravenous or subcutaneous fluids, and run additional tests, if necessary, to determine the underlying cause of the condition.

How Can I Prevent Dehydration?

  • Provide clean water at all times, and change it frequently to ensure freshness. Also, don’t forget to wash your pet’s water bowl every day to prevent bacteria from forming.
  • Monitor your dog’s water intake. Generally, a dog needs at least one ounce of water for each pound of body weight per day. If your dog is not drinking an adequate amount of water, seek veterinary advice. Monitoring water intake is especially important if he’s recovering from diarrhea, vomiting or other illnesses.
  • Purchase a water bowl with a weighted bottom to prevent your dog from knocking it over.
  • Bring extra water when you’re traveling or exercising with your dog.
  • If you notice your pet is drinking less than usual, check his mouth for sores or other foreign objects, such as burrs or sticks.
  • Avoid chaining a dog outside, since he may get tangled up, preventing him from accessing his water bowl.
  • Keep your toilet lid closed to interrupt your dog’s efforts to turn the bowl, which can be a source of bacteria, into a water fountain.

    For over 45 years, Lange Animal Clinic has provided veterinary services in Pekin, IL and the surrounding areas for over three family generations. Our expert staff of Veterinarians, Veterinary Technicians, and Veterinary Assistants are trained to ensure the best quality medical care for your beloved pets-whether it be as a routine medical examination to more complicated surgical procedures. We are a small companion animal clinic providing services for dogs, cats, and exotic pets.

    Dr. Colleen O’Rourke, owner and senior Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, takes great pride in making certain that every patient’s experience is handled with the utmost care, compassion, and economically in the best interests of our clients. Visit us at www.langeanimal.com.  

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Fruits and Veggies That Are Safe for Dogs

dog eating watermelon

June is National Fresh Fruits and Vegetables Month (though, in our opinion, every month should be dedicated to eating healthy)!

While you’re remembering to swap your fries for a salad, think about offering some fresh fruits and vegetables to your dog as well. They’re much healthier and lower in fat than some meat-based treats, and they come with a side of vitamins and minerals that can boost your pet’s health. The best part? Your dog won’t even know the difference.  A treat’s a treat.

However, some foods that are perfectly healthy for people can cause health problems in pets. Avocados and grapes are two examples of food items that surprisingly are quite toxic to dogs. But apples (except for the seeds) and bananas are perfectly safe snack items for your dogs.

To help us keep it all straight and avoid a trip to see us here at Lange Animal Clinic, we found a helpful chart on Imgur detailing which fruits and veggies are safe to feed a dog—and which are not.

Here they are:

fruits and veggies-dogs

For more information on which foods may or may not be suitable for your dog- please consult with a Lange Animal Clinic veterinarian.

Traveling With Your Dog or Cat

Cat n dog travel2

When considering interstate or international travel for your dog or cat, plan ahead because some preparations may need to start six months or more in advance.  Below are some valuable resources for when travelling domestically and internationally with your pets.  Additionally, we provide great safety tips for when travelling with your pets by car.

1).  Schedule an appointment with a Lange Animal Clinic veterinarian for your pet’s exam

Animals should be healthy enough to travel, and depending on the regulations of your destination, there may be additional animal health prerequisites, such as identification, vaccinations, tests, certifications, etc.

2).  Share information with one of our Veterinarians

The destination authorities (consulate or embassy of the country, state or territory animal health department, etc.) may have sent you specific information or forms that need to be shared with or signed by one of our veterinarians.  A Lange Animal Clinic veterinarian may need to make copies of the materials to assist in the CVI process or for recordkeeping purposes

3).  Know the requirements and restrictions for transporting dogs and cats

Countries, territories, states, and even public modes of transportation have requirements and restrictions on transporting animals. The regulations help protect people, animals, and ecosystems by guarding against the spread of dangerous diseases, pests, and invasive and injurious animals. Most likely, a certificate of veterinary inspection (CVI) will be required by the authorities at destination. It is your responsibility to get this information from the authorities of your destination well in advance of travel so that you can plan accordingly, including considering alternatives to transporting the animal(s).

Be aware that some countries and states may require your pet to be placed in quarantined upon arrival (e.g., according to Hawaii’s law for dogs and cats, quarantine may be up to 120 days).

The chart below will help you find the rules and regulations that impact you and your pet. In addition, the International Pet and Animal Transportation Association may be able to assist you with your pet’s international travel.

​​What type of travel? Where to find requirements and restrictions?
​By public air, rail, bus, or boat ​Check with the carrier line that you will be using. Special rules may apply to dogs that qualify under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) as service animals.
​Interstate (travel across state or territory borders within the U.S.) ​Find the requirements of your destination location and the contact information of the animal health authority on the USDA’s webpage, State Regulations for Importing Animals.
​International travel from the U.S. (exporting) ​Contact the consulate or embassy of the country of destination or the country’s animal health authority for information on the importation requirements.

AND

Check the USDA’s Animal and Animal Product Export Information, including if an import permit is required and if a designated port needs to be used.

​International travel into the U.S. (importing) ​The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)has regulations on the importation of dogs and cats into the U.S.

AND

The USDA also has certain import restrictions on dogs, and a two page factsheet on importing live dogs is available for free download.

AND

Check for the import requirements for the state of destination on the USDA’s webpage, State Regulations for Importing Animals.

Also, here are some great resources from the American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA):

Here are some safety tips when travelling in the car with your furry ones:

Dogs shouldn’t roam in the car

The safest way for your dog to travel in the car is in a crate that has been anchored to the vehicle using a seatbelt or other secure means. Dog restraints or seat belts are useful for preventing your dog from roaming around the car and being a distraction to the driver, but they haven’t been reliably shown to protect dogs during a crash.

Cats belong in carriers

Most cats aren’t comfortable traveling in cars, so for their safety as well as yours, keep them in a carrier. It’s important to restrain these carriers in the car so that they don’t bounce around and hurt your cat. Do this by securing a seat belt around the front of the carrier.

Leave the front seat for humans

Keep your pet in the back seat of the car. If an airbag deploys while your pet is in the passenger seat (even in a crate), it might injure your pet.

Keep those heads inside!

Dogs and cats should always be kept safely inside the car. Pets who are allowed to stick their heads out the window can be injured by particles of debris or made sick by having cold air forced into their lungs. Never transport a pet in the back of an open pickup truck.

Give your pet plenty of rest stops

Stop frequently to allow your pet to exercise and eliminate. But never permit your pet to leave the car without a collar, ID tag and leash.

Bring along a human buddy

Whenever possible, share the driving and pet caretaking duties with a friend or family member. You’ll be able to get food or use the facilities at rest stops knowing that someone you trust is keeping a close eye on your pets.

Don’t ever leave your pet alone in a car

A quick pit stop may feel like no time at all to you, but it’s too long to leave your pet in a car by himself. One hazard is heat: When it’s 72 degrees Fahrenheit outside, the temperature inside your car can heat up to 116 degrees within an hour. On an 85-degree day, even with the windows slightly open, the temperature inside your car can reach 102 degrees in just 10 minutes. If you’re held up for 30 minutes, you may return to a car that’s 120 degrees inside and a pet who is suffering irreversible organ damage or death.

For more information about travelling with your pets or for help answering any additional questions that you may have, please contact a Lange Animal Clinic veterinarian.


For over 45 years, Lange Animal Clinic has provided veterinary services in Pekin, IL and the surrounding areas for over three family generations. Our expert staff of Veterinarians, Veterinary Technicians, and Veterinary Assistants are trained to ensure the best quality medical care for your beloved pets-whether it be as a routine medical examination to more complicated surgical procedures. We are a small companion animal clinic providing services for dogs, cats, and exotic pets.

Dr. Colleen O’Rourke, owner and senior Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, takes great pride in making certain that every patient’s experience is handled with the utmost care, compassion, and economically in the best interests of our clients. Visit us at www.langeanimal.com.  

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Debunking Myths of Leaving Your Dog Unattended in Your Car

Dog-In-Car

Sadly there are still many erroneous misconceptions out there surrounding the idea of leaving pets in parked cars. These contribute to dangerous practices that result in the heat stroke cases and deaths that Lange Animal Clinic associates are seeing on a daily basis and that we all read about in the news and online way too often.

We want to debunk these misconceptions and do our part to put a stop to these dangerous practices. Use it to educate yourself and protect your pets, and share it to help educate others. The more people we can get to recognize the inherent dangers of these misconceptions and practices, the more injuries and deaths from heat stroke in pets we can all help to prevent.

Misconception #1: “I leave the windows cracked in the car to let air in”

The Reality: Multiple studies have shown that leaving the windows cracked has only a minimal, and overall insignificant protective benefit.

Studies have shown that the average temperature rise of 3.4°F per 5 minutes in an enclosed car was only decreased to 3.1°F per 5 minutes by ‘cracking’ the windows. This equated to a difference of only 3.6°F over the 60-minute study period (40.8°F total heat rise with windows fully closed, compared to 37.2°F rise with windows ‘cracked’).

Another study showed only a 2°F difference at the end of the 90-minute study period between a fully enclosed vehicle and one with the windows ‘cracked’.

As you can see, while cracking the windows does have some effect on slowing down the temperature rise inside a car, the effect is very minimal and it’s not enough to prevent the temperature inside a car from quickly rising to deadly levels.

Bottom Line:

  • Do not leave your pets or kids alone in parked cars.
  • Cracking windows, short periods of time, relatively mild days, leaving water, or running the air conditioner do not make a parked car a safe place for a pet to be alone.
  • Educate yourself and your loved ones to protect more pets.

Misconception #2: “I’ll only be gone for a few minutes”

The Reality: Whenever you run into a store there are plenty of factors that are outside of your control and which can prolong your time away from your dog.

Consider a longer than usual check-out line, bumping into a friend or neighbor, forgetting something from your shopping list, or even a slip and fall. There really are many unforeseen things that could realistically and significantly delay your return to your car. And that delay can result in your dog suffering (and potentially dying) from heat stroke.

The next time you dart into a store for a “quick shopping trip”, time yourself. Do this exercise a few times and see how long “a few minutes” can actually be. Then keep the following numbers in mind:

19° – that’s the average °F temperature increase in a parked after just 10 minutes in one study
29° – the average °F temperature increase after just 20 minutes
34° – the average °F temperature increase after 30 minutes
43° – the average °F temperature increase after 60 minutes

Now imagine what this would equate to on a relatively mild 80°F day. Imagine what it would be on one of the 100°F days that are common in certain areas, and are becoming more commonplace in others. The results can be devastating.

Misconception #3: “It’s only 70°F out, there’s no danger of heat stroke

The Reality: Temperatures in the low 70’s are plenty hot enough to cause a dog left in a parked car to develop and suffer from heat stroke.

In fact, the study cited above was conducted in San Francisco on a series of relatively mild days. On one of the 72°F days during the study the temperature inside the test car reached 93°F in 10 minutes, 105°F in 20 minutes, 110°F in 30 minutes, and 119°F in 60 minutes! Plenty hot enough to cause heat stroke.

Not only is 70°F warm enough to result in heat stroke, even temperatures in the low 60s can be dangerous for some pets. This is because certain cats and dogs – based on factors such as breed, weight, existing medical conditions, and several other factors – are actually more sensitive to heat than others, and therefore at even greater risk of developing and suffering from heat stroke.

Misconception #4: “I always leave water in the car for my dog, so I don’t have to worry about heat stroke”

The Reality: Though leaving water is a good thing, as it can help to prevent dehydration and heat exhaustion, it does very little to stave off heat stroke in parked cars.

The reason is that dogs rely mostly on the evaporative cooling effects of panting to get rid of excess heat, and their ability to do so effectively is quickly overwhelmed in a hot, stuffy car- regardless of whether or not they have a water bowl in front of them.

Misconception #5: “I leave the air conditioner running, so I don’t have to worry about heat stroke”

The Reality: Air conditioner compressors and car engines fail, and dogs knock into and inadvertently press and hit buttons and switches.

Sadly there are plenty of cases of dogs dying when the car air conditioner failed or a dog bumped into and switched off the air conditioner.When air conditioner compressors fail, the air blowing into the car from the vents often turns from cool to hot, greatly speeding up the temperature rise within the car.

Generally speaking, it is never a good idea to leave your beloved dog in a car alone for any extended periods of time.  Please take precautions when travelling with your pets to ensure their good health and safety to avoid the possibility of heat stroke and death.


For over 45 years, Lange Animal Clinic has provided veterinary services in Pekin, IL and the surrounding areas for over three family generations. Our expert staff of Veterinarians, Veterinary Technicians, and Veterinary Assistants are trained to ensure the best quality medical care for your beloved pets-whether it be as a routine medical examination to more complicated surgical procedures. We are a small companion animal clinic providing services for dogs, cats, and exotic pets.

Dr. Colleen O’Rourke, owner and senior Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, takes great pride in making certain that every patient’s experience is handled with the utmost care, compassion, and economically in the best interests of our clients. Visit us at www.langeanimal.com.  

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National Pet Appreciation Week- June 7th – June 13th

PetAppreciationWeek

Pet appreciation week is a time to celebrate how much our pets mean to us.

Our pets do a lot more for us than provide unconditional love, they help us relieve stress and encourage us to exercise. According to the Centers for Disease Control, pets can decrease your blood pressure, lower your cholesterol and increase your opportunities for socialization.

To learn more about the health benefits of pet ownership, please contact a Lange Animal Clinic veterinarian.

Here are just a few ideas on how to celebrate this week. This is our chance to encourage our pets to exercise, help them relieve some of their stress, and keep them healthy.

Ideas for Dog Owners

  • Add an extra ten minutes to one of your daily walks
  • Learn to give your dog a massage to reduce his stress
  • Visit the dog park
  • Bake homemade dog biscuits with all of his favorite flavors baked in
  • Make sure his or her license, vaccinations and microchip records are up to date

Ideas for Cat Owners

  • Play laser beam for a few minutes of exercise each day
  • Play him a DVD made especially for cats
  • Gently brush your cat or use a massaging grooming glove for a few minutes each day
  • Plant some cat grass near one of his favorite hideouts
  • Make sure his or her license, vaccinations, and microchip records are up to date

Enjoy the beautiful weather with a nice long stroll with your dogs and celebrate the love your pet and you mutually have for each other!


For over 45 years, Lange Animal Clinic has provided veterinary services in Pekin, IL and the surrounding areas for over three family generations. Our expert staff of Veterinarians, Veterinary Technicians, and Veterinary Assistants are trained to ensure the best quality medical care for your beloved pets-whether it be as a routine medical examination to more complicated surgical procedures. We are a small companion animal clinic providing services for dogs, cats, and exotic pets.

Dr. Colleen O’Rourke, owner and senior Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, takes great pride in making certain that every patient’s experience is handled with the utmost care, compassion, and economically in the best interests of our clients. Visit us at www.langeanimal.com.  

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Setup an Appointment

Podcast on the Benefits of Adopting Multiple Cats

Fernpelt

This is an excellent podcast on the benefits of adopting multiple cats.  Please take some time to listen in on this 6 minute video to gain some great insights and benefits of doing so.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aiBR4ReJ7b0&feature=youtu.be


For over 45 years, Lange Animal Clinic has provided veterinary services in Pekin, IL and the surrounding areas for over three family generations. Our expert staff of Veterinarians, Veterinary Technicians, and Veterinary Assistants are trained to ensure the best quality medical care for your beloved pets-whether it be as a routine medical examination to more complicated surgical procedures. We are a small companion animal clinic providing services for dogs, cats, and exotic pets.

Dr. Colleen O’Rourke, owner and senior Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, takes great pride in making certain that every patient’s experience is handled with the utmost care, compassion, and economically in the best interests of our clients. Visit us at www.langeanimal.com.  

About Us 
Our Services
Setup an Appointment