With the dog days of summer soon to be upon us, it’s time to start looking out for our furry friends even more. During the hotter months, our pets’ safety is a priority.
Read below for our top tips of keeping your dog’s healthy and happy under the burning sun this summer, plus some ideas to have fun in the sunny weather with your dog!
Cool down in the water
Taking your dog to the beach can be a fun time while helping them stay cool. If your dog is comfortable off the leash, let them run to their hearts content! Make a day of it or spend your evening walk there as a change of pace.
Salt may be irritating to paws and skin, so be sure to rinse them down after a swim and take extra care around their ears, as trapped water can result in infections. Sand is always an unavoidable part of the beach, but the fun your dog will have makes it worth it.
If the beach isn’t local, turn on the sprinklers and let your dog frolick around! A game of fetch around the sprinkler can be an entertaining activity. If your dog doesn’t love fetch, try filling an inflatable pool and have a chilled-out day lounging around.
Try stand up paddle boarding with your dog!
Stand up paddle boarding is a popular activity that you can enjoy with your dog when the water is calm. Try a local lake, ocean, or river if your dog is comfortable around water and well-trained. It’s a great activity for any dog of any size, age, or breed – just don’t forget your doggie-life jacket!
Making sure their first experience with the board is a positive one is essential, and understanding basic commands such as ‘sit, stay and down’ will help with this, so they don’t jump off. It’s a great new hobby to learn that can become a great summertime bonding experience!
Throw a dog-friendly BBQ
Join together with your friends that also have four-legged furry friends and throw a barbecue when the weather is nice – you’ll enjoy the company and good food, and so will your dogs! Local parks often have grilling facilities, benches, or open spaces for picnics, and plenty of room for your dogs to play around together.
Don’t forget to bring them treats too – we suggest our Longer Chews to keep them occupied, our new Chicken Fillets as a quick natural treat, or a healthy dog snack from our Super Snacks range.
Are you the adventurous type or looking to try something new? Hiking or camping are great outdoor activities to spend with your dog! Dogs are happy just to enjoy your company when camping and will love being outdoors. Be sure to check campground regulations and pack a doggy bag with your pooches’ essentials will help make it a memorable time.
Be familiar with your walking route before going and make sure to consider the level of fitness of both you and your dog, and most
importantly make sure that where you’re planning on traveling is dog friendly. If your dog is new to hiking, ease into it and gradually
train them to increase their endurance and strength. We love how excitable dogs can be, but they can sometimes get so caught up in the
moment and overexert themselves. Bringing enough water is essential, but don’t forget a bowl for your dog!
Know the signs of heatstroke
Heatstroke can come on quickly and be very serious unless treated immediately. Signs of heatstroke in dogs can include excessive panting and saliva, blue-purple or bright red gums, restlessness, lack of coordination and a high body temperature. Lower their temperature gradually by providing fresh drinking water, immersing them in lukewarm (not cold) water or applying a cool towel or ice pack to your dog’s head or neck.
Watch when you walk
Dogs’ paws are very sensitive and walking on hot pavement can damage them. If you’re unsure if it is safe to walk, press the back of your hand to the pavement for 5 seconds, and if it’s too hot for you then it’s too hot for your dog. Walking earlier in the morning or the early evening will help you avoid the hottest parts of the day, preventing dehydration for both you and your dog.
Keep them cool
If you can, keep your dog inside on hot days or ensure they are in the shade. Short nosed or flat faced dogs, such as pugs, English bulldogs and French bulldogs are more likely to suffer from heat stroke and need more care, as they can not pant as effectively as other breeds. Dogs can only release heat through panting, as well as their paw pads, compared to how humans sweat it out through our skin – so if you’re feeling the heat, your dog will be experiencing it even more! Keeping them groomed and regularly brushed can help keep them cooler.
Protect their noses
If you have a fair skinned dog, make sure to ‘slip, slop, slap’. Purchase a special animal sunscreen to ensure they don’t suffer from sunburn. Dogs with short, fine hair are more susceptible to sunburn.