Kirby suffered heatstroke

Kirby is a beautiful one and a half year old Labrador Retriever. During a warm evening in December she was out playing cricket with her owners. She was having a blast chasing the ball back and forth before she suddenly collapsed on the ground. She was barely responsive and breathing rapidly so they rushed her straight down to the clinic.

Kirby was immediately met by Dr Chloe and taken straight through to the treatment room with assistance from Nurse Sarah. She was breathing very rapidly at about 140 breaths per minute. A normal dog will breathe on average 25 breaths per minute. Her temperature was taken and it was high at 40.8 degrees (normal is between 38 and 39 degrees). Kirby was wet down and also cooled with a fan. It was important to get her temperature reduced but not too quickly as that could cause her to go into shock. She was also placed on oxygen in order to assist with her breathing.

After around 15 minutes of active cooling and oxygen her temperature had reduced to 39.3 degrees and her breathing slowed to 40 breathes per minute. Due to the fact that no one was in the clinic overnight, it was discussed with her owners that the best treatment for her would be to transfer her to the emergency centre, where she would be placed on intravenous fluids, have blood tests run and be monitored closely overnight. The intravenous fluids not only help cool the body but they maintain blood pressure, support the kidney system and generally speed recovery.

As Kirby had stabilised it was fine for her to be transported and her owners were happy to transfer her to Animal Accident and Emergency for her overnight care.

Kirby was discharged from the emergency centre the following day after much improved. Her family reports she is back to normal and will think twice before letting her play cricket on a hot day.

Learn more about Heatstroke and your pet