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Great Tips for Keeping Your Dog Cool in Hot Weather

Summer is just around the corner and in some countries, the sun is already pounding, the thermometer will soon rise to 85 degrees during the hottest summer days. You’re hanging out with your best friend, who always wears an impractical fur coat.

What can you do to keep them cool? Dogs rely on panting and resting in a cool place to thermoregulate (keep cool in the heat). Unlike us, dogs and all canids can’t sweat to cool off.

Wild canids would typically find a shady tree or bush to dig a hole under and wait out the heat of the day. But while walking at the end of a leash on a city street, their options are pretty limited.

Here are 10 simple but crucial things you can do to keep your furry friend cool:

1) NEVER leave a dog in a vehicle on a warm day: 

Notice we didn’t even say “a hot day.” The sun can heat a car to over 110 degrees on a 75-degree day in no time. Even with the windows rolled down. Your pet’s life is never worth the convenience of leaving them in the car for even a few minutes. It may feel cool in the driver’s seat, but the temperature in the back of any car can become dangerously hot by the time you lock the doors.

2) Know your dog: 

Many dogs are at high risk for heat exhaustion. These include brachycephalic dogs (smush-faced breeds like pugs and bulldogs), greyhounds, thick-furred black dogs, etc. Take extra care with overweight dogs, young puppies, and older pets of all breeds. They may not be able to regulate their body temperatures well in the heat. Avoid midday activities and limit their time in the hot sun and heat.

3) Pre-hydrate and bring plenty of water: 

Offer an animal plenty of water before, during and after any heat exposure. A dog will drink more water if you make it tasty. Stir in a little chicken broth, a spoonful of meat baby food or a treat, and they may drink more water. There is a caveat to water drinking—don’t let them drink too much at once or you may find they vomit the water.

Great way of providing fresh & cold water for your pooch during walks is with a portable water bottle which is specially designed for dogs.

4) Signs of overheating may go unnoticed or ignored in pets: 

Look for signs of overheating before they become serious health risks:

  • Panting
  • Dark pink to red tongue lolling out of the mouth
  • Dry, tacky mouth and mucous membranes
  • Trying to lie down
  • Lifting feet to avoid hot pavement
  • Lameness, stumbling
  • Slowing down and dragging on the leash
  • Vomiting

These are all signs that a dog is too hot.

5) Older dogs with a condition called Laryngeal Paralysis are more at risk for overheating: 

and even life-threatening collapse. Dogs rely on panting for thermoregulation and the air passing through a wide open larynx can cool a dog down quickly. With Laryngeal Paralysis, a dog’s larynx cannot fully open, and the thermoregulation capacity is restricted. These dogs often have louder breathing noises. This condition is also called “Roarer’s Syndrome.” Keep these dogs out of hot weather. Their life may depend on it.

6) When a pet is overheated, sponge or pours cool water on his abdomen,

 armpits (inguinal and axillary areas) and feet, as well as offering the water to drink. Never use alcohol to cool the skin or feet. This ill-advised method can cause toxicity through absorption of the alcohol through the dilated capillaries of the hot skin. Any dog that collapses or shows signs of severe overheating should be taken immediately to a veterinarian or ER. Intravenous or subcutaneous fluids and medical treatments could be life-saving.

Summer cooling mats for dogs are a great way for lowering their high temperature and keep them fresh during hot days

7) Do not walk dogs on hot blacktop or pavement: 

Did you know that if you can't leave your hand more than 5 seconds on pavement then it means that it's too hot for your dog to walk on?

Dogs do not show signs of pain from burnt feet until it’s too late. Blisters, ulcers, and even serious burns are already present when start to limp or sometimes even fall down. Blistered feet should be attended to by a veterinarian. Relieving them with cool water is the first step. Bandages on feet should be changed regularly to avoid infection or providing them with unique dog shoes can be a wonderful solution as well

8) Assess the weather and logistical conditions before you bring an at-risk dog out in the heat

especially to a parade or street party in a city. Even with shade, plenty of water, wading areas, and some cool dirt, a hot day can still be too much for many pets. Use common sense.

9) Don’t feed your pet within an hour of exercise in the heat

Either before or after. This will reduce the risk of bloat or other gastrointestinal issues. The slow dog feeding bowl can reduce the speed that dogs eat after long walks and promote healthy eating habits as well!

10) Black or dark-colored dogs can become overheated as they absorb more of the sun’s rays

Than a light-colored dog. Keep black dogs in the shade on hot days. Consider pet sunscreen for white or pale dogs or dogs with shaved areas or no fur protection if they have to be in the sun for extended periods of time. They are vulnerable to sunburn, too. If your dog's eyes are sensitive or you just want to protect them as well then uniquely designed goggles are the right accessory for protection!

Remember: Your pets depend on you to keep a cool head and make good judgments about their hot weather activities.


Featured Products:

Portable Dog Water Feeder

Cooling Mats For Dogs

Casual Summer Dog Shoes

Slow Dog Feeding Bowl

Multi-Color Dog Sunglasses/Goggles Eye Wear Protection


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