There are hidden dangers associated with the use of forced and heated air dryers commonly combined with animal cages. Pet groomers and veterinarians are unfortunately too often unaware of the inherent risks from animal heat exhaustion and dehydration resulting from the use of drying cages. The culprit is of course overexposure to a continuous stream of heated air that can quickly cause an animal to lose consciousness and become comatose, suffer internal bleeding, cardiac problems and respiratory arrest.

If a pet is to be cage dried, it is vital that he/she be carefully monitored and never left any longer than necessary. The dryer settings should never be used on the high heat setting. At a minimum, the animal in the dryer cage must be checked every 15 minutes.

A human observer may not recognize the loss of vital signs in time to rescue the animal, which is why a timing device to shut down the dryer after a maximum of 15 minutes is crucial. This is the only acceptable method for ensuring complete animal safety.

The incidence and frequency of animal deaths that have resulted from the improper use of dryer cages has grown as their popularity has gained favor with groomers. It is vital that everyone associated with the use of dryer cages be fully informed as to the inherent risks these products pose.

Ideally, older model dryers should be replaced with new generation products that use a non-heated and non-lethal air stream to dry the animal. Dryer manufacturers are increasingly focused on product safety issues and have abandoned the traditional dryer design that incorporates a heating element.

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January 2005 Newsletter



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