Ranchers are keeping a sharp eye on their animals during this heat wave.

The week-long heat wave is expected to put much of Alberta’s key cattle country into the low to mid 30-degree Celsius range for at least a week.

Jared Sherman, cattle manager at Soderglen Ranches, which operates near Airdrie and the Cardston and Fort Macleod area, says the younger the animal the more closely they need to be watched.

“In Airdrie, these animals were born in February/March they’ve got a lot of age and size and can handle some heat and stress at this stage,” said Sherman.  “But our south ranches, where we are just wrapping up calving, we are watching for dehydration and heat stress during these 30 degree days.”

Sherman adds you can get behind pretty quickly on some of these younger animals if that happens.

Obviously, water and access to it is key.

Sherman says when it’s over 25 C they are adamant about being in the pasture everyday.

That’s because they run dugout’s off a solar system pump and the dugout is fenced off, meaning if something goes down, the animals would have no access to water.