Sweating in humans is provided by the sweat glands. Moreover, contrary to the popular belief, human’s sweat glands are spread not only under the armpits but also almost everywhere in the body. The localizations and duties of the sweat glands of cats and dogs are different from humans’ sweat glands. Thus, pets do not sweat in the way we understand.
There are two types of sweat glands in cats and dogs as well as in humans. These are Apocrine and Eccrine sweat glands. The glands that are responsible for the function of sweating in the sense that is known among humans are the eccrine sweat glands. These glands are found only on the paw soles and nose tips of cats and dogs. The main duty of the sweat glands on the soles of paws is keeping the sole, which is continuously in contact with the ground, moist and soft and preventing the possible destruction rather than balancing the body temperature.
On the other hand, Apocrine sweat glands are the glands that are not responsible for known sweat production but are classified as sweat glands. In general, they are present on all the areas of the body covered with hair in cats and dogs. The secretion produced by the apocrine sweat glands are fat-based and their working systems depend on hormonal stimulation.
In this case, how do cats and dogs provide the temperature balance of their bodies?
Dogs regulate their body temperature by hanging out their tongues after intense activities or in extreme temperatures. This is why they try to cool the blood that passes through their tongue via the improved blood vessel network on their tongue in order to keep the increased body temperature in balance.
Cats also have different methods for balancing their body temperature in warm weather. The cats prefer cooler and breezy places, consume more water and try to keep their bodies humid by licking themselves frequently in order to regulate their body temperatures. However, if these are not sufficient, they will try to balance their body temperature by hanging their tongues out like dogs.
Apart from these methods, it is not in question to have the cats and dogs cool from their sweat glands.
Some dog breeds are hypersensitive to temperature. In particular, the warm sensitivity of the flat-faced dog breeds are much higher than those of other breeds. These breeds cannot breathe easily due to the anatomic structure of their noses. Pug, Bulldog, Pekingese dogs can be shown as an example for sensitive breeds.
Dogs from these breeds have serious difficulties in balancing body temperature through respiration and they are more exposed to sun and heat strokes in hot weathers than other breeds. Compared to other dog breeds, they try to balance their body temperature by hanging their tongues out and opening their mouths as harder and wheezy.
Extreme sunlight and high temperature are the causes of greater stress than the cold in cats and dogs and they have a life-threatening risk. For this reason, especially in the summer months, pets should be protected from hot weather and extreme sunlight. They should be kept away from heavy exercises. It should be prevented to leave them in hot and indoor places for a long time. They should not be left alone in the vehicle in summer months even for a short time. It should be provided to have them drink water frequently. Such that, it should be kept in mind that the weakest organ of the pets are their kidneys.