Summer is a great time for play, with longer days and more recreation time, however, for pups as well as people, the heat can also be a danger. Dogs are unable to regulate their body temperature like humans can, so it's very important to keep your dog cool in warm weather. To avoid heat stroke in dogs, basic measures can be taken to make sure your pup doesn’t get affected by the heat and that you both enjoy the summer season.
Here are 10 top tips to keep your dog cool in the summer heat.
1. Walk your dog early in the morning or late evening when the temperature is cooler. Bring water with you to keep your dog hydrated. The American Kennel Club warns to be aware of signs of dehydration, including reduced energy levels, panting, loss of appetite, dry nose and gums, sunken, dry-looking eyes, and Loss of skin elasticity.
2. Walk on the grass. Pavement, asphalt, wood, metal, and sand a can become very hot during the summer months and can burn your pet's paws. If it feels too hot for your bare feet then it's too hot for your dog's paws.
3. Hydrate. Provide plenty of water and shade. Make sure your dog has a shady place to get out of the sun and keep the dog bowl filled with cool water.
4. Apply pet sunscreen to your dog's easily burned areas: nose, ear flaps, and belly. Thin-coated and light-colored dogs are particularly vulnerable to the sun's harsh rays. The safest and most effective sunscreen to put on your dogs is one that is specifically made for canine use.
5. Make a splash! Take a dip in the pool or ocean, but make sure you rinse off as soon as possible afterwards to remove chlorine or salt and prevent your dog from drinking pool water, which contains chlorine and other chemicals. If you don’t have your own pool, consider purchasing an inexpensive kiddie pool. Your pup may be more likely to jump into a smaller pool and you can toss rubber toys in for fun! Just remember, like kids, dogs need supervision at all times while in a pool.
6. Give your dog a cool summer trim. Heavy coated dogs will appreciate a lighter coat when temperatures soar.
7. Never leave your dog alone in the car. On a warm day, temperatures inside a vehicle can rise rapidly to dangerous levels. On an 85-degree day, the temperature inside a car with the windows opened slightly can reach 102 degrees within 10 minutes. After 30 minutes, the temperature will reach 120 degrees.
8. Use screens on your doors and windows. Open windows and doors pose a real danger to pets. Keep all unscreened windows or doors in your home closed, and make sure adjustable screens are secured.
9. Keep careful watch over older or overweight dogs as they are more prone to overheating.
10. serve up cold treats! Ice cream for dogs or frozen peanut butter will have tails wagging! Even plain ice can do the trick. Make it extra fun with molds that freeze into shapes. Yogurt is a healthy treat to add into the mix as it will do wonders for the digestive system.