Summer is here and with record-breaking temperatures across the world, it’s important to keep your dog safe in the heat. Our furry friends do not do as well in the heat as us humans, so keeping them well-hydrated and away from the heat will help keep them cool.
Now, without further ado, here are ten ways to keep your dog safe and cool during the summer season.
- Find plenty of shade. When you’re going out for a walk in this hot weather make sure to periodically find places with plenty of shade, and if necessary, spend as much time there as needed until your dog can cool down. If you’re out on a walk, and they’re panting quite a bit, be sure to take them to the nearest shade as soon as possible. Do not let them even come close to risking a heat stroke. Always be on the lookout for any signs of a heat stroke.
2. Walk during cooler hours. While walking your dog near plenty of shade is paramount, what’s even more important is the times that you go out. Be sure to go for walks with your pup during the cooler hours of the day, such as early morning or in the evening. Try to avoid going for walks during peak hot hours such as noon to early afternoon hours.
3. Check surface temperatures. Even if you do manage to go somewhere with lots of shade, you should check the the surface temperature of the ground your dog will be walking on. If it’s too hot for your hand, then it’s too hot for their paws. As mentioned, go during cooler hours where the temperature of the ground (whether it’s concrete, wood or sand) will be much more comfortable for your pooch.
4. Cool off with a bath, swim or spray. If you are lucky enough to live near a beach or lake and it’s hot outside, your dog could appreciate a little dip in the water to keep cool. Of course, be careful going into cold water if it’s very hot out as it could lead to shock for your dog. Instead, try going for a little dip at first to feel the temperature of the water. If your dog doesn’t like swimming or taking a dip in the water, then you can try grabbing a hose, or a water spray or jet to wash them down a bit and keep them cool in the hot weather. You can also give them an outdoor bath!
5. Drink plenty of water. This is one of the most important, if not the most important, tips, to keeping your dog safe and helping them cope with the heat. Always have plenty water. Carry a water bottle, and if you could, carry a portable doggy bowl to fill that bowl with water. If you don’t have a portable water bowl, you can of course always try to tilt the bottle or pour some water out of it so they can drink it. In many beachside towns, there are plenty of water fountains for dogs and if this is the case, be sure to stop by them to see if your dog wants to have a drink (but I would still recommend to always carry water, no matter where you are.) But if you don’t live in a town with these water fountains, then carrying some water with you is a must.
6. Consider UV sunglasses to protect your pet’s eyes. Did you know there are sunglasses for dogs? You can easily find these online with a quick search. They will go far in helping to protect your dog’s vision. Us humans wear sunglasses to protect our eyes, so it only makes sense that since dogs go where we go, they too could benefit from protecting their eyes.
7. Offer them a chilly treat. Many cafes and restaurants now offer doggy ice cream, which can be especially handy in helping your dog cool off in the summer. As you know your own dog and what they eat, be sure that the ice cream does not contain any ingredients that could be harmful to them. You can also make your own doggy ice cream with simple recipes online. If ice cream is not suitable, other cool treats such as fruits could work to help keep them hydrated.
8. Consider a cooling bandanna. Did you know there are bandannas out there that are designed to keep your dog cool during the hot months. These bandannas soak in cold water and can help keep the neck area cool thereby helping prevent your dog overheating. There are also cooling mats and coats which can help absorb the heat from your dog’s body and keep them chilled.
9. Never leave them in a hot car. This one should be painfully obvious. Dogs can get overwhelmed by the heat much quicker than we can. Never leave them alone on a hot day, not even for a little bit as it can cause their bodies a lot of damage if they’re left to suffocate in the heat inside of your car.
10. Use sunscreen. There is such a thing as doggy sunscreen out there online. Try to find safe and natural sunblock to prevent your dog’s sensitive bits (such as their ears and nose) from burning with the sun.
Above all keep them away from the heat if possible and always have water nearby.