Your dog may enjoy going along on trips to the beach and hikes in the woods during the summer, but you need to keep it safe in the heat. Know how to help your dog maintain a healthy body temperature and how to spot signs that it’s struggling to cope.
Don’t Expose Your Dog to Extreme Heat
If possible, keep your dog indoors if the temperature and/or humidity are particularly high. If you have a choice, take your dog for a walk or hike in the morning, before it gets too hot, or in the evening, after it’s cooled off.
If your dog has to stay outside during the day, make sure that it has a shady area where it can relax. A doghouse has poor air circulation, so it’s best to let your dog stay in an open area. Give the dog plenty of cool water. If you’ll be gone for a significant amount of time, put ice cubes in the water.
Never leave your dog in a parked car for any amount of time, even with the windows open. The temperature can get dangerously high in a short amount of time.
Avoid Surfaces That Could Burn Your Dog’s Paws
Pavement can get extremely hot on a sunny day and can burn the pads on your dog’s paws, even if it’s wearing protective boots. If the pavement feels hot to the touch, keep your dog off it. Stay inside, let your dog play on grass, or take it for a walk on a shaded trail.
Keep Your Dog Hydrated When Participating in Outdoor Activities
If take your dog along when you spend time outside, stop every 15 to 20 minutes to let it drink some cool water. Don’t give it too much water at one time. If possible, let your dog go swimming or run through a sprinkler to cool off. If your pet is panting excessively, move it to a shady area and give it more water.
Recognize Signs of Heatstroke
Pay attention to your dog’s breathing, energy level, and other cues when you spend time outdoors. If your dog seems tired or lethargic, or if its ears or tail droop, those are signs that it’s struggling to deal with the heat. Take a break from physical activity, give the dog some water, and let it rest.
If your dog pants or salivates excessively, vomits, has diarrhea or seizures, or seems disoriented or uncomfortable, it may be suffering from heatstroke. Take your pet to a cooler place and contact a veterinarian as soon as possible.
Keep Your Dog Safe While It Plays in the Yard
Exercising outdoors is good for your dog’s physical and mental health, but you need to be sure that it won’t run away and get injured by a car or another animal. A hidden fence from DogWatch of Massachusetts can keep your dog safe in the yard and give it the freedom to play. Contact us today to learn more.