Summertime is here! The smell of Bar BQ’s being used, gatherings for evening backyard dinners or pool parties. The sun is in the sky longer.
The children are out for summer break, meaning they are busy playing softball, fishing, helping parents with outside yard work, attending sports camps and practices and visiting relatives.
People are enjoying the outdoors and going places.
Summertime also brings higher temperatures and sunshine.
Summer where I live brings daily temperatures into the high 90’s and 100’s. I still have work that has to be done regardless of the outside temperatures. One chore that has to be done everyday, twice a day is feeding and watering the animals. I feed in the early morning just as the sun is up, and I can see what I am doing before the temperatures reach the highs. Why do I feed so early, to prevent heat stress on myself and my animals.
One major chore is making sure every animal has plenty of water. In the hot summer temperatures it is important that I drink plenty of water to prevent heat stress. Likewise, animals can heat stress and die from heat exhaust just like people. Water and shade are the tools needed to prevent heat stress on hot days.
Heat stress if the first stage of becoming overheated in the summer. Signs of heat stress is headache, dizziness, lightheadedness, sweating a lot, rapid breathing and rapid heart rate.
Signs of heat exhaust include the symptoms of heat stress with nausea and vomiting, muscle cramps and passing out or fainting. Heat stroke is much worse as the person’s body temperature is at or above 103 degrees fahrenheit, they are confused or unconscious. Medical treatment is needed for those with heat exhaust and heat stroke. This information is according to the CDC in the United States.
Heat stress does require care in getting those affected cooled down, but can be done by those around them. Heat exhaust and heat stroke require medical attention.
Elderly, children, pregnant women and those with certain illness are more prone to heat stress.
I still have to do the work outside every day, fix fences, repair or build structures. I start my work in the early mornings. When the temperatures rise I work for short periods of time, 10 to 15 minutes outside. I constantly watch for signs of heat stress. I drink lots of water. My dad had a saying, “Water out, put water in.” Meaning when you are sweating, you need to be drinking water.
In the summertime, I do not get as much outside work done as I do during the fall and spring. I do plan my days to do work inside, painting and maintenance on the inside of the house.
Summertime brings the fun and vacations. Just be aware of the temperatures and stay cool. Be watchful of those around you and yourself for the signs of heat stress.
I hope everyone is having a fun summer. Stay cool and safe.