Summer is a time for both us and our dogs to relish the longer days, bask in the warm weather, and enjoy the many outdoor adventures that the season offers. However, with the excitement of summer, comes the heightened responsibility for us as dog owners to be extra mindful of our furry friends’ well-being. The soaring temperatures, while perfect for beach days and picnics, can bring about challenges for our dogs, such as the risks of heat exhaustion and dangerous heat stroke.

Our canine companions are more than just pets; they’re part of the family. This means ensuring that while we’re enjoying the sun’s embrace, we’re also taking all the necessary steps to keep them cool, comfortable, and safe. Modifying walking routines to avoid the midday heat, ensuring our homes provide a cool sanctuary, and being thoughtful about exercise options are vital to their health during these hot months.

As we gear up to make the most out of this summer, it’s crucial to remember that our dogs rely on us to make the right choices for their care. Whether it’s finding shady trails for morning walks, splashing around in a doggy pool, or simply relaxing in a cool part of the house, keeping our dogs safe in the summer is all about striking a balance between fun and well-being. Let’s ensure that this summer is a time of joy and comfort for our four-legged companions, just as much as it is for us.

Walking Your Dog in Summer: Staying Cool and Safe

Summer walks with your dog require a bit more planning to ensure their safety and comfort. Here’s how to make those summer strolls enjoyable and secure for your furry friend.

Time Your Dog Walks Wisely

In summer, ensuring your dog’s walks are safe means choosing the cooler times of the day. Aim for early mornings or late evenings when the temperature drops. On particularly hot days, it’s wise to shorten the walks to prevent your dog from overheating. Keep an eye on the humidity too, as it can increase the risk of overheating even at lower temperatures. Always be ready to adapt your plans; if the day turns out hotter than expected, it’s better to skip the walk and engage your dog in some indoor play instead. This approach to timing helps maintain your dog’s comfort and safety during the summer heat.

Dog walking

Mind the Ground

Hot surfaces like sand, concrete, and asphalt can be harsh on your dog’s paws. To test the ground temperature, place the back of your hand on the surface for five seconds. If it’s too hot for you, it’s too hot for your dog. Seek out grassy or shaded paths instead.

Keep your Dog Hydrated on Walks

Keeping your dog hydrated during summer walks is crucial. Heat can lead to dehydration and overheating, so carrying water is essential. Portable options like a Portable Dog Water Bottle or Foldable Portable Dog bowl are practical for on-the-go hydration. These items are convenient, easy to carry, and ensure your dog has access to water throughout the walk. Frequent water breaks are important, especially on hot days, to keep your dog cool and well-hydrated.

Sunscreen for Dogs: Protecting from Sunburn

Dogs, particularly those with white or light-colored fur, can get sunburned just like humans. It’s important to apply pet-safe sunscreen to their exposed areas, like ears and nose, to protect them. Human sunscreens can contain ingredients toxic to dogs, so opting for dog-specific products, like Petkin Doggy Sun Stick, is the safest choice. This helps shield your dog from harmful UV rays and keeps their skin healthy.

Heading to a Dog Beach

A trip to a spot with shallow, cool water can be a delightful treat for your dog. Places like dog-friendly beaches offer a refreshing escape from the heat. However, be cautious about the timing, avoiding the extreme heat of midday. Don’t forget sunscreen for both you and your dog. check out the best dog beaches for a fun and cool outing.

Plahing at dog beach

Consider a Cooling Vest

For certain dogs, like older ones, those with health issues, or brachycephalic breeds, a cooling vest can be a lifesaver. These vests come in various types, including evaporative, reflective, and those with gel packs. Consult your vet to find the best option for your dog, considering your local climate and your dog’s specific needs.

Keeping Your Dog Cool at Home

As the summer heat intensifies, it’s essential to ensure your dog remains cool and comfortable at home. With a few simple adjustments and preparations, you can create a comfortable environment for your furry friend to escape the heat.

For Indoor Dogs

As the summer heat ramps up, making sure our furry friends are cool and comfy indoors is super important. If you’re lucky enough to have air conditioning at home, keeping it on is a great way to create a dog-friendly chill zone. No aircon? No worries! Just opening some windows can get a nice breeze flowing through the house. Drawing the curtains during those blazing hot hours helps too, keeping the place nice and cool.

When it comes to fans, they’re fantastic for moving air around, but try not to have them blowing straight on your pup to avoid any dry skin issues. And here’s a cool tip: find the chilliest spot in your house, like a nice tiled floor, and set up a cozy corner there with a comfy bed or mat. It’s like a little oasis for your dog to escape the heat and relax. These simple steps can make a huge difference in keeping your dog happy during those sizzling summer days.

Inside dog

For Outdoor Dogs

When our four-legged friends are enjoying the great outdoors, making sure they have a cool, shady spot to hang out is key. Whether it’s under a leafy tree, a breezy patio, or even a makeshift canopy, having a go-to shade spot is a must for those sunny days. It’s their own little nook to take a break from the sun’s rays.

And for that extra touch of comfort, how about a ventilated bed or a cooling mat? These are just perfect for giving your pup a cool, comfy place to lie down and enjoy the fresh air. Think of it as their personal chill-out lounge, right in your backyard! It’s all about keeping them cool, relaxed, and happy while they’re basking in the outdoors.

Make Sure Your Dog Has Plenty Of Water

Keeping your dog cool is as simple as ensuring they have plenty of fresh water to drink. During those sweltering summer days, a constant supply of water is crucial for your dog’s health and comfort. To make it more appealing and refreshing, consider tossing a few ice cubes into their water bowl. Not only does it keep the water nice and chilly, but those ice cubes can be a fun little treat for your pooch to play with or munch on.

And for an extra bit of convenience and style, you might want to check out something like the Nugget Pet Water Fountain. This neat gadget can hold up to 2.5 litres of water, and it’s constantly filtering to keep things clean and fresh. Plus, it’s got a pretty sleek design that won’t stick out like a sore thumb in your home. It’s a fantastic way to ensure your furry friend stays hydrated and happy all summer long.

Keeping Your Dog Active in Hot Weather

When the temperature rises, you might notice your dog’s energy levels dip. Heat can naturally make them more lethargic, but they still need their mental and physical exercise. The key is adapting these activities to the hotter weather.

Indoor training sessions are a fantastic way to keep your dog’s mind sharp while staying cool. Revisiting basic commands or teaching new tricks not only keeps their brain engaged but also strengthens your bond.

For physical activity, it’s important to scale back on more strenuous exercises like long runs, which can be harmful in the heat. Instead, think of low-impact, engaging activities. Hide their toys or treats around the house and let them enjoy a little treasure hunt. Another cool idea is using frozen treats or their usual food in puzzle toys – it’s fun for them and a tasty way to beat the heat. If you have outdoor space with shade, a shallow Dog Paddle Pool can provide a refreshing playtime. Encourage them to splash around with some water-friendly toys.

A Critical Reminder: The Dangers of Hot Cars and Utes for Pets

It’s absolutely crucial to remember: never, ever leave your pets in a car or on the back of a ute, especially in warm weather. In a hot car, it can take as little as six minutes for a dog to succumb to heatstroke and potentially die. Not only is it incredibly dangerous, but it’s also illegal to leave a dog in a car when temperatures soar. The temperature inside a car can skyrocket quickly, often reaching levels more than double the outside temperature, even on days that seem relatively mild. And don’t be fooled – tinted windows, parking in the shade, or leaving windows slightly open do little to lower the dangerous heat build-up inside a vehicle.

If you ever come across a dog left alone in a hot car or on a vehicle, it’s a race against the clock. If the car is locked and the owner isn’t around, don’t hesitate to call emergency services like your local Police at 000 or roadside assistance. They are authorized to remove the dog from these perilous situations and will act swiftly.

For those with utes, be aware that dogs can suffer burns from the hot metal on the tray. The surfaces of utes can become scorching under the sun, posing a serious risk to your dog’s paws and body. If you’re transporting your dog in a ute, cover the tray with suitable, heat-reflective material and ensure there’s a shaded area where your dog can rest comfortably and safely.