Beat the Heat – hot weather wellness tips
The City urges residents to beat the heat by reviewing these safety tips and resources for you and your pet.
- The City’s community centers are open as cooling centers during regular business hours.
- In addition to community centers, the City’s swimming pools and free spraygrounds can provide relief.
- Do not use a fan as your primary source of cooling on extremely hot days. If your home does not have air conditioning, please go to an air-conditioned location during the heat of the day.
- Check on your neighbors, friends and relatives at least twice a day (morning and night).
- Never leave children, pets or others alone in closed vehicles: within minutes, the temperature inside a car can reach over 140 degrees and this can kill within minutes.
- If you have to work outside or in a non-air-conditioned workplace, take frequent breaks, rest in the shade or cooler environment, and drink plenty of water.
- Avoid too much sunshine, and postpone outdoor activities and games.
- Avoid extreme temperature changes, such as a taking a cool shower immediately after coming inside from hot temperatures.
- Stay indoors as much as possible during the heat of the day in an air-conditioned environment.
- Dress for the weather: wear loose-fitting, lightweight, light-colored clothing; this type of clothing reflects heat and helps maintain normal body temperature. If you have to be outside, cover as much skin as possible to avoid sunburn. Protect your face and head with a wide-brimmed hat.
- RideKC will often have a cooling bus available on very hot days. Check their Twitter page for possible availability and location.
Additional resources from the Health Dept. include identifying symptoms of heat stroke, heat exhaustion and more.
- Keep your pet hydrated by providing it with plenty of water. Keep pets out of the sun and preferably indoors. Be careful not to over-exercise them.
- Symptoms of pet overheating include: excessive panting/difficulty breathing, increased heart and respiratory rate, drooling, weakness, stupor, collapse, seizures, bloody diarrhea, vomit and body temperatures of 104+ degrees.
- Animals with flat faces (i.e. Pugs and Persian cats) are more susceptible to heat stroke because they cannot pant as effectively. These types of pets, along with elderly, overweight and/or sick pets, should be kept cool in air-conditioning as much as possible.
- Do not keep pets alone in a parked vehicle – not only can this lead to fatal heat stroke quickly, it is illegal in several states.
- Give your pet a haircut to help prevent overheating. Hair should be shaved to one-inch length, but never down to the skin, as fur offers sun protection. Brushing your cat frequently can help prevent problems caused by excessive heat.