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Thread: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

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    Default WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    Warning! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer

    1. Never place a caged squirrel in direct sunlight.
    2. Always provide water and shade.
    3. On hot and/or humid days, indoor squirrels should be kept inside.
    4. To-be-released squirrels need to be slowly acclimated to summer temps.
    5. Never leave indoor squirrels (or unacclimated to-be-released squirrels) unattended outdoors.
    6. Take extra care when traveling. Never leave your squirrel in the car without the air-conditioning turned on, even with all the windows open.

    Symptoms of Heatstroke
    Mild--Damp fur, appears to be sweating, rapid heartbeat and breathing
    Moderate--Drooling or "foaming at the mouth," labored breathing, vomiting
    Severe--diarrhea (may contain blood or mucous), uncoordination, seizures, collapse

    If you see any of these symptoms, bring the squirrel indoors immediately and begin Emergency Cool-Down Procedures:

    Emergency Treatment for Heatstroke

    Heatstroke is a life-threatening emergency--Do not delay treatment!

    Symptoms of Heatstroke

    Mild--Damp fur, appears to be sweating, rapid heartbeat and breathing
    Moderate--Drooling or "foaming at the mouth," labored breathing, vomiting
    Severe--diarrhea (may contain blood or mucous), uncoordination, seizures, collapse

    Emergency Cool-Down Procedures

    You must get the squirrel cooled down quickly. Seconds count!

    1. Bring the squirrel inside.
    2. Dip the squirrel in cool water up to his neck.
    3. Lay the squirrel down on a damp cloth with his head slightly elevated and turn on a fan.
    4. Bathe the squirrel with a cold wet cloth, especially the head and tail areas. Ice packs can be placed around the squirrel (not on him or under him).
    5. Offer a small amount of cool water to drink.
    Note: Keep the squirrel as quiet and still as possible; exercise will cause him to become more overheated.

    For mild cases, the above treatment may be enough. For moderate/severe cases, vet care is required to save the squirrel's life. If you don't have a vet, have someone else call around while you continue the cool-down process.

    6. Don't stop the cool-down process, even for a minute.
    7. If it's a warm day, run the AC in your car before you transport.
    8. Transport the squirrel quickly to the vet, continuing to bathe the squirrel with a cool washcloth while en route (bring some cold water with you).
    9. When you get to the vet, tell them it's severe heatstroke. They should rush the squirrel to the back for emergency care immediately.
    10. No matter what happens, keep bathing the squirrel in cool water until the squirrel in the vet's hands.

    If heatstroke occurs away from home or while traveling. Use the same procedures as above. Use anything you can find to cool the squirrel down. In a pinch, a cold soda or even water from a nearby stream can be used until you can find help.

    If you have no access to a vet, try to find a rehabber. If you're on your own, you will need to monitor the squirrel constantly, including his body temperature. Take the squirrel's temperature using a rectal thermometer or a digital ear thermometer. When his temp reaches 103 degrees F, you must stop the cool-down procedures to avoid overcooling. Continue to offer cool water drop by drop.

    Most squirrels will not survive moderate/severe heatstroke without IV fluids, which only a vet can provide.


    Note: Signs of permanent organ damage may not show up for several hours or even days. The squirrel may seem to recover initially, then get worse later.

    A squirrel can develop heatstroke in as little as 10 minutes, even in the shade!
    Last edited by Nancy in New York; 09-20-2015 at 10:22 PM. Reason: I bolded the part about squirrels developing heatstroke even in the shade.
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  3. #2
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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    BUMP!!
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    Michelangelo


    *
    If you can't afford the vet,
    You can't afford a pet.
    NEGLECT IS ABUSE.

    "Better one day in the trees, than a lifetime in a cage."

    '...and the greatest of these, is Love. '

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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    BUMP!

    Big heat wave coming east, everyone. Please note and protect your fuzzers!
    Island Rehabber
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    If you can't afford the vet,
    You can't afford a pet.
    NEGLECT IS ABUSE.

    "Better one day in the trees, than a lifetime in a cage."

    '...and the greatest of these, is Love. '

  5. #4
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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    BUMP!! It's 93* in PA and 88* in the Bronx....PLEASE be mindful of your fuzzies in outdoor release cages!
    Island Rehabber
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    *
    If you can't afford the vet,
    You can't afford a pet.
    NEGLECT IS ABUSE.

    "Better one day in the trees, than a lifetime in a cage."

    '...and the greatest of these, is Love. '

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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    Here we go with the fans hanging in the trees again.

  8. #6
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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    BUMP!!!
    Island Rehabber
    NY State Licensed
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    "Ancora Imparo" (I am still learning)
    Michelangelo


    *
    If you can't afford the vet,
    You can't afford a pet.
    NEGLECT IS ABUSE.

    "Better one day in the trees, than a lifetime in a cage."

    '...and the greatest of these, is Love. '

  9. #7
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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    BUMP!

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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!


  11. #9
    RedSquirrel Guest

    Unhappy Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    I was driving today and saw something fall from the telephone wire, I pulled over to find out it was a squirrel. At first I thought the Squirrel must have bit the wire and electrocuted itself to death, but it was still alive. Then it hit me it was up there in the heat with no shade and it was breathing fast and acting a bit lethargic. It also looked a bit thin compared to other squirrels in this area. I wasn't sure what to do other then give it water to drink and poor some water on it to cool it down and it didn't seem to mind it one bit. It could still move itself, but didn't seem to want to out of exhaustion. I did not want to pick it up in fear I might frighten it and cause it more distress. I then took an old baby buggy top I had in the back of my car to shade it from the heat and catch the wind...plus hide it from other people. I was on my way to work so I had some cherries in my bag so I set the cherries next to it in hopes it would eat and to help with re-hydrating. After reading this post I'm worried now that I might have done the wrong thing by leaving it there. According to this post it won't recover without even more care then that. I should have called into work and got it to a sanctuary. I feel terrible. Is there anyone I can call to pick it up? I was about 9:30am and now its 11:48am here. Would it be dead by now.

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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    At least you stopped and tried to help this squirrel. It may have been something other than a heat related illness.

    Do you have any local rehabber or wildlife center nearby? If so you can call them and let them know what happened. Perhaps you can stop by there at lunchtime and see if the squirrel is still around? Or on your home from work?

    Most people would not have even slowed down to take a look, you offered help. Hopefully, your gift of water, shade and some cherries was enough to help it regain its strength.

    Quote Originally Posted by RedSquirrel View Post
    I was driving today and saw something fall from the telephone wire, I pulled over to find out it was a squirrel. At first I thought the Squirrel must have bit the wire and electrocuted itself to death, but it was still alive. Then it hit me it was up there in the heat with no shade and it was breathing fast and acting a bit lethargic. It also looked a bit thin compared to other squirrels in this area. I wasn't sure what to do other then give it water to drink and poor some water on it to cool it down and it didn't seem to mind it one bit. It could still move itself, but didn't seem to want to out of exhaustion. I did not want to pick it up in fear I might frighten it and cause it more distress. I then took an old baby buggy top I had in the back of my car to shade it from the heat and catch the wind...plus hide it from other people. I was on my way to work so I had some cherries in my bag so I set the cherries next to it in hopes it would eat and to help with re-hydrating. After reading this post I'm worried now that I might have done the wrong thing by leaving it there. According to this post it won't recover without even more care then that. I should have called into work and got it to a sanctuary. I feel terrible. Is there anyone I can call to pick it up? I was about 9:30am and now its 11:48am here. Would it be dead by now.
    See my wild squirrel adventures in the thread "Squirtle's yard!":
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    See the sisters Pip and Nip!
    https://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/...-(Pip-and-Nip)!

    Loving dad to Sir Max, 2017-2018. There is no foot so small that it cannot leave an imprint on this world.

    "Once in a while you get shown the light, In the strangest of places if you look at it right."
    -Grateful Dead

  13. #11
    RedSquirrel Guest

    Unhappy Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    There is a Wildlife Sanctuary and I will call them, but honestly I've dropped animals/birds off there before and I am not sure if they do pick up for squirrels. Commonly people will drop them off there if they are kind. Being it's Wisconsin though some people do not care to take care of squirrels as some hunters here look them as another food source (soup typically) or people with gardens will set traps and either drowned them or give them to someone who will eat them. It kills me to see so many people not even slow down and just run them right over...terrible. If they won't pick it up I will stop by on my way back from work and get it if its still there and alive. I hope it's okay. I truly am an animal lover and it was hard for me to leave it like that to begin with.

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    RedSquirrel Guest

    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    Okay I called the Wildlife sanctuary and they don't do pick ups. So I called Animal Control and asked if they could bring the squirrel to the Wildlife Sanctuary as they are expecting it if it is okay. Animal control said they had no problem doing that and that they commonly bring them there if the animals are still alive. She said she would call me back and let me know how the squirrel was. So I am hoping it all goes well. I will update if they update me.

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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    Well, I hope the squirrel is off on his own but this sounds like a good plan in case it still needs help. Thank you for helping this little fellow out!


    Quote Originally Posted by RedSquirrel View Post
    Okay I called the Wildlife sanctuary and they don't do pick ups. So I called Animal Control and asked if they could bring the squirrel to the Wildlife Sanctuary as they are expecting it if it is okay. Animal control said they had no problem doing that and that they commonly bring them there if the animals are still alive. She said she would call me back and let me know how the squirrel was. So I am hoping it all goes well. I will update if they update me.
    See my wild squirrel adventures in the thread "Squirtle's yard!":
    https://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/...quirtle-s-Yard!

    See the sisters Pip and Nip!
    https://thesquirrelboard.com/forums/...-(Pip-and-Nip)!

    Loving dad to Sir Max, 2017-2018. There is no foot so small that it cannot leave an imprint on this world.

    "Once in a while you get shown the light, In the strangest of places if you look at it right."
    -Grateful Dead

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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    Just giving this a little bump since the temperatures are skyrocketing.

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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    It's that time of year again to give this thread a little bump.
    Please read the first post.
    It can mean the difference between life and death.

  20. Serious fuzzy thank you's to Nancy in New York from:

    lukaslolamaus (06-18-2017)

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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    Just a bump to this thread because we are getting to that time of year. I am trying to help someone tonight with this very problem so it is definitely worth a refresh!
    Squirrels, squirrels and more squirrels....
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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    With the major heat coming in tomorrow (my area is to be high 90's) I was moving my "acclimate kids" from the covered porch to the yard under the tree. Upon moving my last one I realized her face was all wet and so was her belly. She's been outside on the porch for more than 2 weeks. It never got above 80 on the porch, they get residual AC from the house, they get absolutely no sunshine, and there was a gentle breeze all day.

    I checked on the other 6 and they all seem ok.

    We are in the process of emergency cool down procedures right now with Nibbles.

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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    OK this is really scaring me, now. I am releasing 9 kids for two other rehabbers, four at one release site and five at the other. It is going to be 97* tomorrow and they've only been out since yesterday afternoon. How the hell am I going to keep these guys cool? I plan to bring frozen water bottles so they can "heat dump" by lying across them on the floor....the pens are in the shade, but otherwise I don't know what to do for them......
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    NEGLECT IS ABUSE.

    "Better one day in the trees, than a lifetime in a cage."

    '...and the greatest of these, is Love. '

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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    Quote Originally Posted by island rehabber View Post
    OK this is really scaring me, now. I am releasing 9 kids for two other rehabbers, four at one release site and five at the other. It is going to be 97* tomorrow and they've only been out since yesterday afternoon. How the hell am I going to keep these guys cool? I plan to bring frozen water bottles so they can "heat dump" by lying across them on the floor....the pens are in the shade, but otherwise I don't know what to do for them......
    I'm freezing grapes watermelon and giant blocks of ice. Nibbles was easy to bring in the other 10...not happening. If it gets crazy bad I'm going to hose down the cages or worst case open the portals.
    I know you don't have some of those options but there are many rehabbers that do hard releases all the time....I'd do it if my option was cooking them in a cage. Not perfect but better than the alternative...

    Our temps tomorrow are now to exceed 105...I may very well have 10 fewer squirrels tomorrow. Meaning I'll release them all.

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    Default Re: WARNING! Squirrels Can Overheat in Summer!

    Quote Originally Posted by island rehabber View Post
    OK this is really scaring me, now. I am releasing 9 kids for two other rehabbers, four at one release site and five at the other. It is going to be 97* tomorrow and they've only been out since yesterday afternoon. How the hell am I going to keep these guys cool? I plan to bring frozen water bottles so they can "heat dump" by lying across them on the floor....the pens are in the shade, but otherwise I don't know what to do for them......

    Some good tips from the rat people:




    To adapt these ideas on a larger release cage scale (depending on the roof of your cage) get a large block of regular ice from a supplier and put it (isolated) on the top of the cage in a garbage bag with tiles on the floor inside the cage.

    Diamond Ice Company
    1232 Randall Ave, Bronx, NY 10474 Phone: (718) 542-6994

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