(WWLP) – Hot weather can pose serious danger to your pets especially if they need a lot of exercise.

The summer season can bring both fun and danger to your furry companions. Temperatures between June and August can reach 90 degrees or higher in western Massachusetts, increasing the chances your pet falls victim to heatstroke.

“I keep a close eye on him. Even though he’s a white dog, he’s very susceptible to the heat,” Paul Bushey and his dog ‘Chef’ stick to the shade when it comes to getting exercise on hot days. Animal experts recommend exercising your dog before 8 a.m. or after 5 p.m.

Encourage your pet to take it slow outdoors by avoiding activities like ‘fetch.’

You’ll also want to be cognizant of the temperature of the pavement. During these hot temperatures, your pet could burn its paws and need attention from a vet.

“She goes for her morning walk, we’ve got the trails and sometimes we’ll go down by the river and they’ll jump in the water. You know, we’ve got water spots.” Lenny Scott of Feeding Hills

Signs of heat stroke

According to the American Kennel Club, signs of heat stroke in dogs include:

  • heavy panting and rapid breathing
  • excessive drooling
  • bright red gums
  • higher than normal heart rate

If your pet experiences any of these symptoms call your veterinarian immediately. Once a dog experiences heatstroke once it’s more likely to happen again.