ANN/THE STAR – The extreme heat that is currently hitting several countries not only affects humans but also poses a risk to animals, which can suffer from heat stroke.
Former Malaysian national zoo assistant director Associate Professor Dr Vellayan Subramaniam said, just like humans, heat stroke could prove fatal and cause damage to the internal organs of animals if not treated immediately.
“All animals that are classified as mammals, reptiles or birds are also susceptible to heat stroke.
“For example, dogs and cats only have very few sweat glands located on the soles of the feet and around the nose to sweat.
“Unlike humans, sweat glands are distributed almost all over the body,” Dr Vellayan, who is also a UiTM Faculty of Pharmacy lecturer in Puncak Alam, told Bernama TV in a special online interview. He said animals in the zoo were well cared for during the hot seasons, with zookeepers providing enough water sources for them to wet their bodies.
The former Zoo Negara chief veterinarian said animals with an aversion to water need to be given enough drinking water, aside from being placed in an area with good ventilation.