Summer is finally here which means more outside time for you and your dog! During these hot and steamy months, it is very important to keep your canine companion in mind since this heat can be hard on them. Don’t sweat it, though, continue reading to learn helpful ways to keep your dog cool and comfortable this summer.
Not even if you think you’ll only be a few minutes! Temperatures can soar inside of a closed car even if it isn’t scorching outside. If you’re headed to the grocery store or running errands where dogs are not welcome, leave your furry friend at home during this time of the year, or choose to go places where they can come along with you.
Most dogs prefer not to be trapped indoors, therefore, the heat and sun can become unavoidable. For this reason, it is a good idea to either find some natural shade or create your own shady space for your dog to lay down in. While trees can be a great provider of shade, not all yards have them or the direction of the sun can add obstacles as well. A few options for creating some shade are portable sun shades, patio umbrellas, and pop-up canopies where you can even incorporate a misting system!
As we return to pre-pandemic life and start to get out of the house more often again, our dogs will be left at home alone for periods at a time. Be sure to leave the air conditioner on and close the drapes to keep the temperature at a comfortable level, so your dog is able to relax. If your home does not have AC, open a few windows, leave a fan on, or perhaps look into a cooling vest for your furry friend.
Limit the amount of time and time of day that you exercise with your dog during the hot and humid months. Try adjusting your walk routine to be during the cooler parts of the day, such as the early morning and later in the evening. During your walks, carry enough water for the both of you to stay hydrated. Use the pavement check as a gauge, where if the ground is too hot for your hand, it is also too hot for your dog’s paw pads!
Providing your dog with more than enough cool water to drink is essential each day of the year, but even more so in the midst of the hotter months. Keep an eye on their water bowl to make sure it is always full and if you decide to go out walking or hiking, give them a small amount of water every 15 to 20 minutes to allow their stomachs time to absorb it. Another way to encourage your dog to drink enough water is by creating an icy treat for them to interact and play with. This can be as simple as placing your dog’s favorite toys and treats in a metal bowl, filling the bowl with water, then freezing and serving!
No one wants their pup to be uncomfortable and we all want to avoid any chance of a heat stroke or any other heat-related illnesses. These are just some of the ways to keep your dog cool and safe during the high temperature months. Now that you’ve brushed up on summer dog protection, it’s time to enjoy the sun safely with your best friend!
For more summer safety tips, including coat care and keeping your dog at a healthy summer weight, check out ASPCA’s article Hot Weather Safety Tips!