Summer is a great time of year to spend some quality time outdoors with your dog, but it’s essential to protect them during the hotter periods. Dog owners will know that they’re pretty resilient creatures, but they can still experience heatstroke, dehydration, and fatigue. There are a few ways you can prevent this. It’s important to always find them a shady spot, give them plenty of water, and be mindful of their behavior and look for signs of overheating. Here are some simple ways to keep your dog cool in summer.
Never leave your dog in the car
The most important thing when the weather is hot is to not leave your dog in the car, even for a short time. Cars can heat up very quickly, and this can be dangerous for your dog. Leaving the windows open isn’t enough to cool them down and they could experience heatstroke quicker than you might think. Plan ahead so you can avoid leaving your dog in the car. If you need to you could attach their leash to a secure post somewhere in the shade or leave them with another person.
Avoid walking during the hottest time of day
Exercise is one of the main essentials for dogs, whatever the weather. During the summer it’s best to avoid the hottest time of day, however. Take them for walks in the morning or even instead when it’s a few degrees cooler. This will be much more pleasant for both of you. If you or your dog get hot on walks take plenty of breaks in the shade.
Look out for signs of overheating
Be mindful and keep an eye on your dog’s behavior. They may show signs of overheating. These include excessive panting and drooling, collapsing or extreme fatigue, or an increased heart rate. If your dog shows any of these signs, move them somewhere cool and give them fresh water. You can also call your vet to be on the safe side. Here is some more advice on what to do if your dog overheats.
Take them swimming
Swimming is a great alternative to walking during the summer, but not all dogs like it. If yours is a fan of the water then it might be fun to take them for a swim. This will be a good way for them to cool down and they’ll get some exercise as well. Be careful when taking your dog swimming and look for places with shallow, clean water. Even the best swimmers can get caught in currents or sick from contaminated water so it’s advisable to know the area beforehand. Here are a few more swimming safety tips for dogs.
Keep them hydrated
Take plenty of water out with you and a bowl so you can give your dog a break and a drink. It’s better to bring your own water if you don’t have access to a faucet while you’re out as water from rivers or other bodies of water can be contaminated. If you are traveling with your dog this summer, remember to stop frequently. You could even give them a water bowl in the car. You both need to stay hydrated, especially in the summer heat.
Watch out for pests
There are several summer pests that affect dogs and these can be a nuisance. The last thing your dog needs in the heat is irritable bites from fleas or ticks as well. Fleas, ticks, flies, bees, wasps, and even snakes are more common in summer, so look out for these. Ensure your dog has had a recent update of flea treatment. Be wary of long grass and anywhere you might find nests. Dogs unfortunately have a way of finding these things so it’s a good idea to be aware of the risks. Speak to your vet for more advice about pests during the summer.
Read online resources
As well as speaking to your vet, you can also find plenty of useful resources online. Dog Endorsed, for example, is a fantastic blog with lots of information about dog health and safety. You can find many helpful tips for looking after your dog at all times of year. Taking your dog out during the summer is a great way for both of you to get some exercise, but you need to be mindful of the heat as well.
Hope you find this post resourceful to help you keep your pooch safe and enjoy your time together for longer. Always look for ways to keep cool this summer! Enjoy.