9 Ways To Keep Your Dog Cool this Summer
As much as we love the summer sunshine, it can be very dangerous for our furry friends, sometimes even fatal. That’s why it’s essential to keep dogs safe in the heat! So, we have put together 9 top tips to keep your dog cool this summer.
1. Spot Heatstroke Early
Heatstroke in dogs can be life threatening, it is absolutely vital that you look out for the early symptoms of heatstroke to prevent it escalating. Heatstroke is when your dog is unable to regulate their body temperature, it’s very common during the summer months as the weather gets warmer. There are many symptoms to look out for, these include panting or drooling excessively, vomiting, diarrhoea and extreme weakness. It is crucial to be on the look out for these symptoms when the weather starts to heat up. Over heating can be caused by spending too much time in the direct sunlight, being on a walk or outdoors in the heat, or even lay down in a car. Never leave your pup unattended in your car if it’s a warm day, even if the windows are open! If you notice any of the symptoms of heat stroke, take your pup to the vet immediately.
2. Choose the Right Time for a Walk
It’s important to choose the correct time to take your dog for a walk on a hot summers day. The best time to walk your canine companion is early in the morning or late in the evening, when the weather is cooler. Walking during these times will help prevent your dogs paws from burning as well as it being a more suitable and comfortable temperature for them. The weather can be deceiving and sometimes you may think it’s cool enough to take them out. The best way to test the temperature is to place the palm of your hand on the pavement. If the pavement is too hot for you, it will certainly be too hot for your pup. Hot pavements can cause severe pain and burn paws, even on the shortest of walks.
3. Circulate Cool Air
During summer heat waves, it’s important to keep your home as cool as possible. You can do this by ensuring there is always cool air circulating. Set up multiple fans throughout the house and make sure they are turned on – be careful that the cables are out of reach. If you have air conditioning, turn this on. It’s also a good idea to close any curtains or blinds, keep the rooms in your house as dark as possible to minimise the direct sunlight coming through. Your pups need a calm, cool place to go to feel comfortable in the heat.
4. Keep Your Dog Hydrated
When the weather is hot, your furry friends need plenty of water to prevent them becoming dehydrated. Ensure your dog has a bowl of clean, fresh water throughout the day. Keep a bowl inside and also outside in the shade. If they need a little encouraging, you can incorporate fresh water in a number of fun ways. Why not make some frozen ice lollies? You can also use garden sprinklers and gentle hose pipes to keep your dog cool.
5. The Importance of Shade
If your dog wants to spend time outside during hot weather, it’s important that they are kept out of direct sunlight. Shade created by trees or buildings is the best option. However, if you don’t have natural shade in your garden, try setting up a shaded den with an umbrella or gazebo. Also place their water bowl in the shade and lay a cool mat or towel down for them. Include their favourite toys to deter them away from the sun.
6. Reduce Exercise in Hot Weather
It’s essential for most dogs to get plenty of exercise for their health and development, however it’s important to be cautious in hot weather. You should reduce the amount of exercise your dog usually gets in these conditions. Too much physical exercise can lead to your dog overheating and suffering from dehydration. So instead go for a gentle walk in the late evening or early morning. If you have young children ensure they keep energetic games and playing with your dog to a minimum.
7. Wet Play
There are many fun activities you can do to keep your dog cool in the summer with water. Set up a sprinkler that they can run in and out of, blow up a small paddling pool for them to dip in, gently spray them with the hose pipe or get them involved in a family water fight.
8. Cooling Mats
It’s important to keep your dogs stomach and paws cool as these areas can heat up the quickest. The easiest way to do this is by laying out damp blanket/towel for them to lie on throughout the day. You can also purchase doggy cooling mats; an excellent option to keep your dog cool this summer.
9. Dog Sun Cream
Did you know that dogs can get sunburn? Dogs with short or white hair tend to be more at risk than other breeds, so it’s important to be extra careful with these dogs and ensure they are protected. Speak to your vet for advice and tips on the best dog-friendly sun cream to suit your pups needs.
We can’t deny that we love the sunshine, however it’s important to remember how to keep your dog cool this summer. Remember to give your dog plenty of water, frequent breaks to cool down inside or in the shade, yummy frozen treats and toys, less exercise and staying wet will all keep your furry friend safer during the summer months.