June 7th, 2023 by
Summer can be hard on everyone but it can be especially brutal on our furry companions and if your dog hasn't adapted well to hotter temperatures, then you'll need to take extra care when it comes to keeping them cool during the warmer months, after all, they are very limited to what they can do to help, so in this blog, we will discuss some tips on how you can ensure that your pup stays healthy and cool this summer:
The Importance of Keeping Your Dog Cool
As mentioned above some dogs can struggle during the warmer months as they are restricted in how much they can do for themselves which is why it is important that we take time to look out for them and do our best to help them keep as cool as possible, not only to ensure that they stay comfortable but it is also very important for their health, as dogs are susceptible to a wide range of heat-related illness such as:
Heat stroke can be incredibly dangerous to your pup which is why it is important that we take measures to ensure that they do not develop heat stroke and if in the unfortunate case that they do develop heat stroke then it is important to take steps to help them recover as in the worst-case scenarios heat stroke can be fatal.
Dogs are also much more susceptible to dehydration during the summer due to their increased panting and sweating through their poor pads, dehydration can in turn lead to a string of other health problems so always ensure to make sure they have access to plenty of water.
Burnt Paw Pads
You should be cautious when walking your dogs during heat waves, as pavements and other hard surfaces can absorb a lot of heat energy that will increase the temperature which can make them incredibly hot to walk on for your furry friend which can lead to them burning their pads which can cause a great deal of discomfort.
You may not know this but just like us our dogs can suffer from sunburn, this is especially common for short-haired dogs with darker fur which as you may know from experience can be incredibly uncomfortable and painful. You can buy sunblock especially designed for your dogs, if you do not have access to sunblock then ensure there is plenty of shade for them to relax under and ensure you do not let them spend too long outside in the sun.
If you have an energetic pooch that often has burst of energy and loves running around the yard and exploring then be sure to monitor them closely and watch that they are drinking plenty of fluids as they can risk overheating, especially during the hottest part of the day – and while it may be difficult try to get them to play indoors where they will be sheltered from the sun.
What Can I Do to Keep My Dog Cool?
There are a few steps you can and should be taking during the warmer months to aid your dog in keeping cool:
Provide Plenty of Water and Shade
One of the most obvious things you can do for your dog is to provide plenty of fresh cool water for them to drink, you may need to place a couple of bowls in different places and if your pup tends to be lazy you may need to actively take them to their bowl to ensure that they are drinking. You should also provide a shaded place where they can relax comfortably, set up the shaded area in your dog’s favourite spot to relax as this will encourage them to lay there more. You can also find cooling mats and toys you can provide to help them feel even more refreshed. Some dogs will also like to run through water, so let them play in the sprinkler, or hose or even give them their own paddling pool!
Keep your dog's coat healthy and brushed out
Keeping your dog's coat clean and healthy is one of the most important things you can do to keep them cool. Brushing your dog's coat regularly helps to prevent matting, which can trap heat in their body and make them very uncomfortable.
Don't shave your dog in hot weather
Although it might make sense to you to reduce the amount of fur your dogs have when the weather can actually be more detrimental to their well-being. So, it is important that you do not shave their fur. Their fur actually helps them regulate their body temperature by keeping them cool during the hotter months. When you shave a dog's coat, it can make them more susceptible to sunburn and cause them to overheat more easily because they won't be able to cool themselves down as effectively.
Do not leave your dog outside for extended periods of time
The first thing to remember is that dogs can overheat quickly in hot weather. They have less of a tolerance for high temperatures than humans do and are often not as good at regulating their body temperature. When the temperature is at the highest around midday we recommend bringing your dog inside or keeping them out of direct sunlight. If for any reason you must leave your dog outside while you're away from home, make sure they have access to shade and water so they don't suffer from heatstroke or dehydration--both of which could be fatal for them!
Make Sure to Walk Them at The Right Time
Another important thing to keep in mind is to walk your dogs at the right time, as we mentioned above when the weather is very hot surfaces will absorb a lot of heat energy which can make them hot and incredibly uncomfortable to walk on for your dogs and can lead to burns. So it is advisable to walk your pooch in the night once the sun has set and the ground has had time to cool, or early in the morning before the temperature has had a chance to get too hot. If you are unsure if it is too hot to walk your dog, a good standard practice is to place your own hand on the floor, if it feels uncomfortable for you it will also be uncomfortable for your pup. Also, bring water and ice with you when you go out with your pup.
We hope that you've learned some helpful tips for keeping your dog cool this summer. If you have questions or concerns, we encourage you to consult with your veterinarian. We know that it can be hard to keep up with the right amount of care when there are so many other things going on in life! But remember that your pup loves you unconditionally--and they deserve all the help they can get when temperatures begin to soar.
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