Animal Friends Blog
Our dogs, big or small, pedigree or mixed breed are all at risk of heat stroke and heat exhaustion if they’re exposed to too much sun during the hot summer days. To stop your dog from overheating it’s important to do the best you can at keeping them cool, so you can help them stay happy and healthy in summer.
Tips for keeping your dog cool in summer
Provide enough water
Making sure your dog has access to clean, fresh water is important at any time of the year, but this is something that should not go amiss during the summer months.
Whether they’re playing in the garden, you’re out on a walk or they’re cooling off inside, make sure that fresh, cold water is something they can cool themselves down with.
Always remember to take a bottle of water and bowl (collapsible rubber bowls work well) with you when you walk your dog – that way you can ensure they are hydrated even if they go running off on a wild goose chase, or your walk turns out to be longer than expected.
Avoiding peak heat
The temperature and humidity of a summer’s day can vary drastically from one day to another, so you’ll be able to judge the time of that daily walk depending on the day’s forecast. Early morning and in the evenings usually work better as it tends to be cooler than the afternoon.
Before heading out on your walk remember to test the pavements with the back of your hand. If it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for your dog’s paws.
Never leave your dog in the car
It’s too dangerous to leave your dog in a car, even on the milder days of summer the temperatures soon rise to a heat our dogs just cannot bear and it can become life-threatening. If you’re travelling this summer and your dog is coming with you make sure someone stays with the dog outside if you must make any stops at services or you need to top up your fuel.
It’s not illegal to leave a dog alone in a car but the owner can be charged with animal cruelty if the dog becomes ill or dies as a result of being left in a hot car.
Make use of water play
When you’re hot there’s nothing better than splashing some cold water over your face, it’s refreshing and cooling, and the same is true for our dogs.
Buy a pool or sprinkler, or visit a river or lake, and let your dogs have fun while staying cool.
Other things that’ll keep your dog cool
- Wet a towel with cold water and let your dog lay on it
- Always provide shade outside
- Give your dog homemade frozen treats
- Buy cooling toys for them to enjoy
- Consider buying a cooling jacket
Know the signs of heatstroke
Sometimes, no matter what you do to make sure your dog doesn’t get heatstroke, it can still happen so it’s important to know what symptoms you need to look out for so that you’re able to get them the help they need when they need it.
- Sunken eyes
- Dry mouth
- Excessive panting
If you notice that your dog is showing these signs you’ll want to move them to a cooler location and wet their coat with cool water and call your vet.
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