The Enchanted Rock State Natural Area is advising hikers to leave their dogs at home after numerous pets in recent days experienced heat exhaustion.
Park rangers rescued five dogs unable to complete the 4.5-mile trail during a two-day span earlier this week. Last year, rangers had several dogs die from heat exhaustion and are just trying to be proactive to keep them safe this summer.
With the 100-plus degree heat Texas has experienced recently, the state park trails are dangerous for pets. In addition, the gravel on the trail can reach up to 150 degrees, making it extremely painful for dogs’ paws. Owners should always touch the pavement with their own hands first and if it is too hot for them, it is too hot for a dog.
Signs a dog is suffering from heat exhaustion include panting, drooling, vomiting, and breathing distress. Here’s a video from Texas Parks and Wildlife about heat safety for your pet.