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How to keep your pets safe in the heat

The past few days have been pretty hot, and pet owners need to be aware that the heat can harm their pets and other dangers leading up to the holiday weekend.

WAYNE COUNTY, Pa. — We haven't gotten to the dog days of summer, but it sure has felt like it for our four-legged friends. The Riverside Dog Park in Hawley was empty as temperatures soared into the 90s around midday—a good sign, says Dr. Brittany Gross, a veterinarian at Cherry Ridge Veterinary Clinic near Honesdale.

Dr. Gross says heatstroke in animals is common this time of year.

"The number one sign would be panting, dogs being really anxious and worked up. We're going to see dry tongue, tongue hanging out, and overall the dogs just being in distress."

Dr. Gross says if you can't get your dog to the vet immediately, there are some things you can do.

"If you think your dog is actively overheating, you can put cool towels on the dogs, basically anything that we would do to cool down."

Gabby Heffron and her puppy Louie were out for a quick walk this afternoon in Honesdale. She says she worries about walking him in this kind of heat and tries to take every precaution.

"He doesn't really like the sun. There's not really a lot of shade on our road, so I have to take him down here. We'll walk under the trees and water bottle in the car," Gabby said.

Some pet owners have more than just the heat to worry about. This upcoming weekend is the Fourth of July, and that means fireworks.

"Dogs have fireworks anxiety, and you can't blame them. It's this crashing from the sky, and so it's really hard to get dogs to be acclimated to fireworks because they're so unpredictable and so loud," Dr. Gross said.

Dr. Gross says it's important to contact your vet if you have any concerns about your pet's health or wellbeing and also recommends keeping your dog indoors to stay cool and safe leading up to the holiday weekend.

RELATED: Soaking up the sun at Tobyhanna State Park

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