How to Cool Down Your Dog in Hot Weather
An alarming amount of dog owners don’t adequately prepare their dog for the blistering summer months of June through to August.
(Of course, that heat often lasts through to October these days!)
This isn’t to say that these owners are being purposefully neglectful, of course.
It’s just that even the most loving and attentive of dog owners sometimes assume that their dog will be fine in summer.
Dogs are pretty durable creatures, right? When you get a dog in hot weather, beware!
While your dog will probably be perfectly happy basking in the sun on a hot summer’s day, there are a bunch of dangers that come with these months for your furry friend.
If you want to make sure your pup makes it through the summer in one healthy and happy piece, then this is the guide for you!
Don’t Leave Your Dog in Hot Car
You already know this though, right?
Even with the windows open, that car will turn into an oven very quickly.
Though most dog owners are already well aware of the dangers here, it’s worth highlighting this point.
Because it strengthens the case that a dog’s body is nowhere near as prepared to deal with the summer months and their concomitant heat as a lot of people assume!
Some Tips for Walking a Dog in Heat
No more going for a walk with your dog when there’s a bitter chill outside.
Now it’s nice and warm, the skies are stunningly blue, and the flowers and foliage are in full bloom.
But is it really perfect weather for your dog?
Remember: they’re better at keeping themselves warm in cool weather than they are keeping themselves cool in warm weather.
They need the opportunity to cool down every so often – especially when you consider how excited they can get when you’re walking them!
Dogs need access to shady areas outside, so a particularly long walk should take place in areas where you know there is plenty of shade.
Just like us, dogs can get sunburn. You need to consider the heat of the pavement, too.
If you’ve ever gone barefoot outside in really hot weather then you know full well how hot the ground gets – it almost feels like you could fry things on it!
This is why shade is important – and why you should probably walk your dog in the morning or the evening, when things are a bit cooler.
You should also avoid muzzling, because this interferes with their ability to pant, which is an essential cooling mechanism for your dog.
Get Your Dog a Haircut
The reason why dogs are so good at getting warm during cold months is that they have an abundance of fur!
When you have a dog in hot weather it’s imperative to get their dog fur cut or trimmed.
(Seriously, even the thin-furred ones probably have more fur than you think.)
They’ll start to shed some of that fur when the temperature starts to rise, but they don’t really shed their fur quickly enough.
Your dog doesn’t need that heavy coat anymore.
Help your friend out by giving them a good fur cut!
That fur not only absorbs a lot of heat, but it also helps keep internal heat, well, internal.
That’s part of the point of fur – which is precisely why dogs are more likely to overheat if their fur is too thick.
Hydrate Your Dog with Water
When you’re adventuring with your dog, it’s best to have some water with you that your dog can drink.
Many dog owners assume that natural sources of water nearby will be fine, but this isn’t always the case.
Puddles and ponds tend to be quite dirty, and may even be filled with dangerous chemicals.
Yes, your dog’s stomach can withstand quite a lot of bacteria, but it’s better to be safe than sorry!
Bring a bottle of fresh water and a little bowl with you that your dog can drink from periodically.
If you’re going to be hanging around a swimming pool, then you need to be careful of the chlorine in that pool.
Dogs love to swim during the summer, and a swimming pool can be great for them.
But you need to make sure you give them a good rinse afterwards with fresh water to ensure that chlorine doesn’t end up irritating their skin!
Try to ensure they don’t drink too much water from the pool, either.
Preparing Your Garden
Your dog will want to spend a lot more time in your garden, but you need to make sure that it’s adequately prepared for summer.
You should take into account a lot of the advice we shared with you regarding walkies, because it applies here, too!
For example, ensuring that there’s plenty of shade in your garden is essential.
Don’t just rely on trees, because the position of the sun may not provide shade at all times.
Consider getting a dog house, which will provide shade wherever the sun is.
Check out the top rated houses for dogs if you think your garden could use a little more shade for your friend.
You’ll no doubt have noticed by now that summer is when your garden is more likely to be filled with pests! There are more flies, ants, ticks, and even fleas hanging out in your garden when the sun is out and the air is warm.
Getting your dog’s fur clipped will help keep those pests away, but you should also ensure that your grass is properly cut, too!
This gives those pests a lot less room in which to roam around.
Summer Dog Treats
One of the best ways of keeping your dog healthy is to make sure they’re eating right – and one of the best ways of doing that is to not always rely on dog food!
There are a bunch of summer treats that we often indulge in that are also good for dogs.
Watermelon, for example, is fine for a dog, and can help with cooling due to its moisture content.
Carrots, coconut, and green beans are also great for your furry friend.
You can even get ice cream made specifically for dogs!
While your dog will properly happily take a lick from your own ice cream cone, it’s definitely wiser to keep them away from it due to the lactose content.