Check our 10 tips for exercising your dog in Summer
As the temperatures rise it is important to remember that the humidity and heat can pose a serious threat to your dogs health.
- Never leave your dog in a hot car. An obvious tip for number one, however horror stories of dogs dying due to heatstroke are still common. Leaving your dog in a parked car for any period in hot temperatures puts their life at risk.
- Pay attention to their behaviour. If your normally active dog suddenly becomes lethargic, they may be overheated and dehydrated. Panting is extremely normal for any dog, however if they appear to have shortness of breath and seem very tired they may be exhibiting signs of heat stroke. To avoid any of these offer frequent breaks from exercise in a cool area.
- Bring water everywhere! Seriously! Checking to make sure their bowl is always full and swapping out the water often to ensure it is always cool and fresh. Carrying a collapsible bowl while out of the house is always a good idea, especially if you’re going for a long walk or hike. Check out our portable bowls here.
- Keep high risk breeds indoors. There are some dogs more prone to heat related illnesses and should be kept indoors when the temperature rises. Short muzzled breeds like bulldogs, pugs, Boston terriers, etc. are at a high risk during summer. Dogs with thick double coats like akitas, huskies, Australian shepherds, and Bernese mountain dogs should also be kept indoors as they will heat up quickly outdoors. Older dogs, overweight dogs, puppies, or any dog with previous heat related health issues should be kept inside during extremely hot weather.
- Protect those paws! During the hot summer you wouldn’t want to walk on burning hot pavement without shoes, right? It’s easy for us people to forget how hot some walking surfaces can get from the strong sun. The 5 second test is a great way to tell if the pavement or sand is too hot for your pup. To test, hold your hand to the surface. If you can’t keep it there for 5 seconds, it is too hot to walk your dog on. Try walking them on grass instead or getting some summer booties!
- Take them swimming instead. Does your dog usually go for a game of fetch in the park? Swap it out for a refreshing swim instead! Don’t forget to hose your dog down after they swim to avoid skin irritation.
- Mental stimulation games. Your pup need to constantly be learning, just like humans! If the heat is too much for both of you to bare, try purchasing some indoor treat or puzzle games to keep them guessing. For hours of fun check out our boredom busters.
- Time of day. Best to take your furry friend outdoors early in the morning or after dinner, when the sun isn’t strongest. Taking them out on your lunch break when the heat is at all time high could be detrimental to their wellbeing. A nice long walk would be easier for them to handle opposed to a short, high intensity game of fetch.
- Indoor adventure! Hop in the car and go for a indoor adventure. Pet stores are usually air conditioned and cool, and can be very stimulating will all the smells. Consider taking your pup for a nice stroll and picking out a new toy.
- Signs of heat stroke! Most important: know the signs of heat stroke! Excessive panting, drooling, agitation, bright red tongue, pale gums, vomiting, and diarrhoea are some very key symptoms to look out for. If the heat is at a high and your pup begins to exhibit these symptoms it’s time to contact their vet. Immediately move them to a cool area and get them some cold water. Action will need to be taken to keep your dog safe!