Keep your canine cool with these tips
By Catalina Barrios
What is your favorite season? I love fall. If you ask my son he will say, summer and if my dog could talk she would agree with my son.
During the summer I am always busy and there are days I wished they had more hours to spend enjoying the outside with both my son and our dog. We love going for walks, going to the park, and running around my parents’ big yard.
During periods of extreme hot temperatures, we see advisories from public health to stay hydrated in order to prevent heat stroke. As people can get sick from the heat, heat can be hard on dogs too.
It is our job to ensure our furry friends stay cool especially since they can’t tell us when they feel overheated.
Check out these 10 ways to help our dogs beat the summer heat:
1. Keep your dog hydrated
This may be obvious but it is very important to keep your dog hydrated all year round but especially during the summer. Every time I go out with my dog for a walk I always bring extra water to ensure she stays hydrated. I will suggest putting ice cubes in their water bowl and refill as necessary if you are spending a long time outside. Dogs sometimes don’t know when to stop playing and having fun, so make sure you are monitoring them and how much they are drinking.
2. Splash Pool
There’s nothing like watching the joy of playing in a kiddie pool that your dog and kids experience. It’s the best feeling ever. Dogs love splashing all over and kids love bonding with their dog. You can purchase a kiddie pool or you can purchase a foldable dog pool for around $70 USD which can also help your dog to cool down in the summer heat. You can easily transport this pool with your dog everywhere you go, from a friend’s backyard to the dog park.
3. Keep Your House Cool
If your dog will be home alone, make sure they can feel cool. Leave the air conditioner on and close the drapes. If you don’t have an air conditioner, make sure to open the windows and turn on a fan. Consider placing a fan where it will blow on your dog. A home monitoring system where you can check the room temperature from your phone is ideal for a pet owner.
4. Make Frozen Treats
Who doesn’t enjoy a frozen treat on a hot day? You can buy dog safe ice creams or freeze ingredients your dog will enjoy such as: apple slices, ripe bananas, and certain fruits and veg. Always look up whether a vegetable or fruit is safe for your pet before feeding it to them. Check out the American Kennel Club’s list here. My dog enjoys frozen strawberry popsicles for a cool treat.
5. Never Leave Your Dog In The Car
Summer is the worst time of the year for your dog to be inside a car. On a hot day, the temperature can rise very fast inside a closed car. Don’t leave your dog in the car even if it is only for a few minutes because the last thing you want is to see your dog dehydrated. The best option is leaving your dog home or go places where he can come with you.
6. Freeze Your Dog’s Toys
I love this idea! This will be great stimulation for your dog as they will enjoy licking their way to biting their toys. Put some toys/treats in a bowl filled with water (add a bit of low or sodium free chicken broth for some flavor). We love these freezable toys from foufou brands.
It is important to keep your dog properly groomed. If your dog has long hair, get rid of any tangles he may have since this will help keep him cool. Don’t shave your dog’s coat as it will help him keep warm during the winter. Brushing him frequently will allow for proper air circulation and protection from the sun.
8. Visit Your Vet
It is very important to keep your furry friend’s shots up to date, especially in the summer. Because your dog spends more time outside during the summer, it is more likely he could come in contact with a pet that has rabies. Summer is known for being a popular season for fleas and mosquitoes which carry heartworm and dangerous ticks.
9. Be Mindful Of The Time Of Day Your Dog Exercises
It is recommended to take your dog for walks preferably in the early morning and evening hours since they are the cooler parts of the day. Make sure every time you take your dog for a walk to carry enough water for both of you.
10. Use A Wet Blanket
A moist hand towel or a bath towel that has been kept in the freezer is a great help for your dog to stay cool. A wet towel will cool your dog more if your dog lays on it rather than the towel on top of your dog’s coat.
Since dogs can’t tell us when they don’t feel well, the following signs will tell you when your dog is feeling overheated.
It is very important to take your dog right away to the vet if you see any of these signs:
- Vomiting or drooling
- Difficulty breathing
- Rapid heartbeat
- Dark or red gums and tongue
We enjoy having fun and more if it is with our family and furry friends. It is very important during the summer to take care of yourself, your family and pets by staying cool.