Summer is just around the corner, along with hot weather and blue skies, giving us more quality time to spend with our furry friends outside
However, the summer season can sometimes be an uncomfortable one to man’s best friend. During this time of year, dogs feel the heat just as much, if not more, than the rest of us.
From avoiding hot pavement surfaces to regularly staying hydrated, its often tricky for dog owners to navigate the summer season, but in preparation of the warm weather ahead, here are some top tips of how you and your dog can stay safe and enjoy summer this year.
An obvious reminder yet a necessary one.
Dogs suffer from severe thirst in extremely warm weather. Look out for keys signs of dehydration in your pet, including: excessive drooling and panting, dry gums, sunken eyes and lethargy.
Dogs enjoy sunbathing just as much as their owners, however, direct sunlight can overheat them so keep your pet in the shade as much as possible.
Keep your pet off the pavement!
When on a summer stroll be aware of the effects hot surfaces, notably cement, can have on your dog’s wellbeing. Paw burning, an increase in body temperature, overheating and exhaustion, can all effect your pooch.
Consider carrying a water spray with you when out with your pet. Using it on your dogs paws and stomach every so often when out for long walks in the heat is the perfect way to counter any sore paws and overheating.
There are also a number of dog-centric accessories on the market to counteract overheating.
Furthermore, dogs are no stranger to sunburn. Try to keep dogs in the shade to minimize the effect of burning and apply sunscreen on sensitive areas such as the nose, ears and anywhere with thin fur.
In the warmer climate, it is vital you still get outdoors with your dogs, but pick your time wisely. Taking your furry friend out during the cooler times of the day is ideal.
Swimming is also an excellent form of exercise for dogs during the summer. Be cautious of strong tides and the effects of drinking salt water if you are visiting the beach.
If you own a puppy or smaller dog, an alternative to a beach or lake swim is setting up a paddling pool in your garden.
When traveling long distances dogs tend to get agitated in cars, especially in heat, with car sickness being common.
Before setting off on a long car journey visit your vet to determine whether dog suffers from motion sickness or has a phobia of travelling. Often motion sickness is stabilised with anti-nausea tablets.
Remember to keep your pet strapped in either on a leash or dog crate to avoid trouble with the police.
Finally, do not leave your dog alone in a hot car. Hundreds of dogs lose their life each year due to heatstroke after being left in cars on hot days.