Summer is a great time for you and your dog. Spending time in the great outdoors together, splashing around in water, taking those perfect pictures to capture holiday memories…both you and your pup are guaranteed a wonderful time. Still, you do need to remember your dog’s health and safety under the sun. As much as you care for yourself in the hot weather, you should also be mindful of your four-legged friend.
Here are some tips for those days when the sun is shining, and the temperature is raging.
1. Cut down on exercise.
While it’s important for your dog to stretch his legs, you need to limit it when the sun is at its hottest. A walk can be hard work for any of us when the temperature is at its highest and like us, poor pooch can become exhausted and dehydrated. Limit walks to those times in the day when the temperature is at its coolest, and spend the rest of doggy’s exercise time playing games close to home.
2. Be mindful of hot surfaces.
Another note for dog walking; remember poor doggy’s feet. You wouldn’t want to walk barefoot on the sun-scorched concrete and pathways, and neither does your pup. The soles of their feet are very sensitive and liable to burn, so do the right thing by pooch, and take walks on grassy areas or purchase these adorable pet booties to protect the feet of your canine companion.
3. Keep your dog hydrated.
When out and about or in the home, ensure your dog always has something to drink. You would be carrying water for yourself when out for the day, so pack in extra bottles for your dog. When bottles are empty, look for water sources when outside, and fill those bottles up so you never run out. Keep dog’s dish topped up with water at home too, and if you are leaving pooch at home for an extended period, ask somebody to check in from time to time to provide a refill. And remember to provide water at mealtime. If you aren’t giving pooch wet food, it’s doubly important to have plenty of water to complement the freeze dried dog food you may be feeding them.
4. Never leave your dog alone in the car.
Even with the windows cranked down a little, your dog can still overheat in the burning temperature. If you are running short errands during the day, leave your dog at home rather than taking him with you, or ditch the car and take dog for a walk if it’s only a short distance. If you are going out for the day and can’t find a dog sitter for your dog at home, visit places that are dog-friendly so he doesn’t have to stay cooped up in the car. For longer distances, pull over occasionally and have a rest stop. You and your dog will need hydrating, so don’t forget your dog’s dish for his water supply.
5. Offer sun protection.
No matter how furry your dog is, remember they can still be exposed to the sun’s powerful UV rays. It’s wise to purchase sunscreen specially formulated for dogs, so don’t rely on the stuff you use for yourself. There is some advice on sunscreen here which we think you will find useful. The other thing to remember when you’re out and about is to stick to sheltered areas whenever possible. And when sunning on the beach, bring a large umbrella for both you and pooch to nestle under, or buy a dog tent for your dog to give him added protection from the hot sun.
6. Find ways to cool your dog down.
When you notice poor pooch flagging in the heat, wrap him up in cool wet towels to bring down his body temperature, and use a fan to aid the cooling process. Again, provide water, of both the drinking and splashing around in kind. A paddling pool for your pup to play around in will prove invaluable when you’re relaxing in your garden. Take note of the warning signs of heat stroke in your dog, and if your attempts to cool your dog down prove ineffective, you must call the vet immediately.
7. Watch out for dangerous creatures.
Dogs are curious beings. Unfortunately, this is not always a good thing. There are several creatures that are harmful for dogs that are more present in the summer months. Ticks can be very dangerous to dogs, so you will want to make sure that you have a good tick repellent to protect your pets. Additionally, snakes, as well as other types of reptiles are dangerous for dogs to bite. You will also want to do some research and find out what types of plants in your area are dangerous for pups as well. There are various types of flowers and wild mushrooms that could pose a threat to your pet if consumed. You will want to make sure you do not have any of these in your yard this summer.
8. Buy the summer essentials.
We have already mentioned a couple of products for pooch, but you can find more here. From cooling vests to mosquito repellants, stock up on what you need this summer, ensuring both you and your pup can enjoy the summer weather together.
It is important to take care of your pet, especially in extreme summer heat. Do all you can to care for your furry friend this summer. You will both feel happier if you do. Do you have a pet? Let me know if I missed anything in the comments down below.