Dehydration in Dogs: Symptoms, Causes and Treatment in Port St. Lucie, FL

Do you know how to recognize signs of dehydration in your dog? Dehydration can be a very dangerous condition that can quickly lead to life-threatening results. By learning how to recognize the symptoms and causes of dehydration as well as knowing how to treat this problem, you can help your dog stay safer.

Read through the article below to learn everything you need to know and more about dehydration in dogs in Port St. Lucie, FL. If you suspect your dog of being moderately to severely dehydrated, go to the emergency vet right away for IV fluids and other necessary, life-saving treatments.



Listed below are the main symptoms of this condition: 

Excessive Panting

Excessive panting happens in many dogs who are dehydrated. Unfortunately, this panting contributes further to dehydration, which may cause the condition to progress rapidly from this point forward. Even if your dog isn’t panting excessively with her tongue out, she may be breathing very heavily instead.

Excessive Drooling

Excessive drooling also contributes to dehydration and worsens the condition quickly. It is commonly seen along with excessive panting. These two symptoms of dehydration occur in the earlier stages of the condition, so they can be good signs that it’s time to see a vet quickly.

Elevated Heart Rate

As dehydration worsens, it causes a dog’s heart to need to work harder to keep the body functioning. This factor, in turn, will cause the dog’s heart rate to increase significantly. If your dog’s heart rate is elevated along with other symptoms on this list, there is a good chance dehydration is the culprit.

Loss of Consciousness

As dehydration progresses, it may cause a loss of consciousness in your dog. When this occurs, it should always be treated as a severe emergency situation.


Listed below are the main causes: 


Overexertion is a common cause of dehydration in dogs who are very active. If you allow your dog to play outside all day on a hot day, she is likely to become dehydrated, even if she’s drinking plenty of water throughout this time. Make sure your dog rests in a cool, shady place with lots of clean, fresh water available at all times.


Fever is another common cause of dehydration in dogs. Dogs who run a fever for longer than 24 hours, and dogs who have a dangerously high fever, are at a greater risk of develop dehydration as a secondary problem.


Dogs who are left alone in a vehicle, even on mild days, may be at risk of heatstroke. Heatstroke very quickly leads to dehydration and may lead to death in as little as one hour, depending on the situation. If your dog has heatstroke and is dehydrated, go to the emergency vet without hesitation.

Vomiting and Diarrhea

When vomiting and diarrhea occur for longer than a day, they may quickly lead to dehydration in your pet. Your dog will be losing a lot of fluids through vomiting and diarrhea, which can contribute quickly to dehydration symptoms and a worsening of the problem.


Listed below are the main treatment methods: 


In mild cases of dehydration, you should make sure your dog is drinking plenty of water. If she isn’t interested in water for some reason, try giving her plain, unseasoned chicken broth (no onion, garlic, or salt included) or feed her some wet dog food to improve her fluid intake instead.

IV Fluids

Dehydration of any severity can receive IV fluids for treatment. Mild dehydration may not require them, but moderate to severe cases do. When you take your pet to the vet or emergency vet for dehydration, expect them to give her an IV fluid bag to help combat the problem.

Vet Monitoring

After your dog receives IV fluids, she will likely need to stay with the vet for a short time to be monitored for her recovery. Mild to moderate cases of dehydration may be sent home for monitoring, but moderate to severe cases typically need to stay at least a day with the vet.

Treatment of Underlying Health Problems

If your dog’s dehydration is caused by fever, vomiting, or diarrhea, then she will need to be treated for the underlying problem contributing to the dehydration as well. If she has heatstroke, this issue must be treated right away as well.

Contact Veterinary Medical Center of St. Lucie if Your Dog is Dehydrated

With the help of this guide, you should have a better idea of what to expect regarding dehydration in your dog in Port St. Lucie, FL. If your dog is mildly dehydrated, you can likely take care of the problem at home. However, you should go the vet or emergency vet for treatment and fluids otherwise.

Be sure to talk to your vet about the underlying cause of dehydration in your dog as well. It is possible that your dog may have a health problem causing this symptom, which could require thorough treatment. Your vet will work with you to determine what’s going on with your pet and figure out a treatment plan too. For more information, or if you need to schedule an appointment, contact Veterinary Medical Center of St. Lucie by calling (772) 337-8570.  We know that pet emergencies can happen at any time, so we are available 24/7 to provide emergency care. We are here for you and your pet.